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Roberto is a bored young man living with his family in the suburbs of Buenos Aires who begins a relationship with an older man named Raul. Their romance takes a disturbing turn after Raul catches Roberto with another man and turns increasingly abusive.
Top customer reviews
2. No finesse, no subtlety, no suspense. The write-up on the back is the best part of the story line.
3. Actors suck and are all hideous. I swear they picked the fugliest people on the planet to be the main characters.
4. Sex scenes are basically porn.
5. Takes place in a s--t barrio or something somewhere.
6. Plot-what-plot is pretty unbelieveable to begin with but is even more unbelieveable the way it's "acted." (I use the term acted loosely.)
7. The Spanish is terribly translated into the subtitles. The dialog itself brings the story nowhere.
8. Do yourself a favor and DO NOT trust the other good reviews on here!
Things start to fall apart when Roberto gets together with Cesar, a young man from Spain, whom he meets online. Raúl finds out about it, and becomes more abusive and violent, perhaps to the point of murder. He also fears that Raúl will hurt his family if he tries to leave him.
Obviously, this is a very dark film, with graphic violence throughout. The acting is fairly good, and it is well photographed (The screener DVD I was sent had some issues with "tiling" in some scenes, but I assume this won't be a factor in the full DVD release.) The film is in Spanish with English subtitles, and the latter are difficult to follow, in the more dialogue-intensive scenes. Unexpected ending, worth a look. Four stars out of five.
It's not often you get a film where the main character is loathsome but compelling to watch. This is an uncomfortable film set in a sprawling characterless neighborhood of an Argentine town, curiously void of any population. It's about Raul (who is certainly no picture) in his 50s and Roberto (a bit handsome in a slightly dumb sort of way) aged 19. I think I have the names right, thought the DVD sleeve suggests it's the other way around (but then the subtitles confuse 'leaving' and 'living' or is it 'loving'). Nobody in the town featured in the film seems to have a real job; fenced compounds seem the order of the day.
Young Roberto picks up Raul at the local rail station where freight trains rumble through from and to who-knows-where. Money does not seem Roberto's primary motive. He's a little surprised though by the abruptness and violence of Raul's pounce on him once they get to Raul's compound; it's pretty much a rape. This doesn't stop young Roberto not only not fleeing but hanging around next morning to clean the accumulated dishes in the kitchen sink, and do the work surfaces too. Clearly there's no sucker like this. We are bemused by the relatively handsome Roberto's passivity in accepting his lot, but also by what drives the loathsome Raul.
Roberto takes this astonishing acquisition home to a meal with his grandmother and sister. Neither seems to bat an eyelid at this obviously strange match. Are they inured to Roberto's pick-ups or deadened by poverty to accepting whatever happens? So the relationship continues. Roberto wants to be more than just a handy lay for Raul - he wants Raul's ass; but Raul doesn't consent readily and puts him off easily. We learn without much surprise of Raul's little earners, drugs and guns. Roberto gets so frustrated he finds another pick-up at the same station, and they hit it off. Unwisely they let Raul stumble onto their relationship. What happens thereafter has an inevitability, and it doesn't end there - Roberto's sister, who at first bizarrely finds a magnetic attraction to Raul, comes into the action also, culminating in a dramatic ending.
But where this film scores in my mind is the sheer ugliness of Raul. Imagine a greasy weasel combination of Brian Cox (as in his L.I.E. 2001 film, and Harvey Keitel and you want to know what makes him tick. It's a performance arguably on a par with De Niro in Taxi Driver. You'll be more careful whom you - or your son - pick up after watching this film, that's for sure.