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Our hero Mario is a morgue assistant who writes down and types up the autopsy reports. He is single and lives opposite a cabaret Dancer, who has been laid off to get some stew inside her as she is seriously anorexic. Mario quite likes a bit of `thin' and so goes about wooing her. This involves fried egg rice, impromptu crying jags and bribery - not exactly Romeo and Juliet.
She does seem to have a number of gentleman admirers and whilst that may go with the territory of being a dancer, I don't think Mario quite likes it. Then the crackdown by the military kicks off and things start to go from messy to not very nice at all.
Because of the autopsies in this you will not be wanting to have a TV dinner whilst watching and I can't imagine a pop corn vendor selling out at any of the screenings. It is a bit close to the old bone. There is no mood music which strips it back to the essential emotions being portrayed by a brilliant cast. The period setting is great from the cars to the fashions. Mario has a hair do like a seventies boutique mannequin - marvellous. It does appear to be slow in places, but when things start to happen you will be glued to the screen. The writer and director Pablo Larrain has made a film about a period in the history of Chile that not a lot of the world knows very much about and he has done it in a visceral and unique way.Read more ›
The main character of the story is Mario (Alfredo Castro), a lonely, sad fellow who works as a transcriber at the forensic institute in Santiago, Chile, where autopsies are performed. He is truly a reserved and lonely man with no apparent opinions or ambitions. While most of his coworkers, including his boss, are in favor of the Salvador Allende's - who was the president of Chile at the time - regime, he seems to really don't care. However, for some reason he is infatuated by Nancy Puelma (Antonia Zegers), who happens to be his neighbor, and who also works as a dancer at a second rate theater. Her best days are over, and she is fired from her job. Alfredo tries to help her, even convincing her ex-boss to give her a second chance, with him agreeing to give his car away for the favor. At that time, Chile is in turmoil because the right-wing, US- sponsored Chilean military forces are trying to overthrow the Allende government. As a result of the eventual coup d'état, hundreds of bodies killed by the military begin arriving for "autopsies.Read more ›
"Post Mortem" (2010 release from Chile; 98 min.) brings the story of Mario, just a regular guy who transcribes the notes of the pathologist's commentary during post mortems. Mario has a crush of sorts on his neighnor across the street, a young woman named Nancy, a dancer living at home with her dad and brother, both part of a larger group of leftist protesters. Then one day the unthinkable happens: there is a military coup, and Nancy's brother and dad disappear, while Mario is overwhelmed at the hospital with the never-ending arrival of dead bodies. To tell you more of the plot would surely ruin your viewing experience, you'll just have to see for yourself how it all plays out.
Several comments: when I picked up the DVD, I intentionally neglected to read the plot summary, as I wanted to be surprised. Was I ever! While initially it looked like this was going to be the tale of an awkward romance set in perilous times, the movie became a full-blown political drama in the second half. I found myself transfixed and mesmorized as I was watching the second half, and on pins and needles how it would all play out. As the movie concluded, it all made sense of course. After this movie, the next film from director Larrain would be "No", which in fact I only saw just months ago at my local art-house theatre here in Cincinnati. Whereas "Post Mortem" focuses the beginnings of the Pinochet regime, "No" focuses on its waning days. In that sense, these movies, while plot-wise completely unrelated, nevertheless complement each other quite nicely thematically. Bottom line: if you are in the mood for a quality movie that is MILES away from your standard Hollywood fare, "Post Mortem" is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED (and so is "No").
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I get the feeling that there is something deeper here I'm not getting, and maybe my detachment from the political aspects of this film are what is serving up my coldness towards... Read morePublished on April 18, 2013 by Andrew Ellington
This is the second in a trilogy about the Pinochet years in Chile by Pablo Larrain, nominated in the current Oscar foreign film category for "No. Read morePublished on January 16, 2013 by NYC Lap Swimmer
This film was brilliant. Don't expect to be laughing throughout the whole thing as it is a very, very dark piece about a very, very dark period in Chilean history, however, after... Read morePublished on October 9, 2012 by H. Drummond