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Cinema Village

Un Varón

(NR) 82 min

SHOWTIMES 04/19/2024 (change date):

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Synopsis:

Two Q&As with director Fabián Hernández following the 7pm shows on Friday, December 8 and Saturday, December 9.

Colombia’s official Oscar submission, the captivating and poignant drama from exciting up-and-coming writer-director Fabián Hernández, is a sensitive and subtle exploration of Latin American masculinity and gender dynamics against the backdrop of Bogota's streets. Acclaimed at Cannes Directors’ Fortnight, the story centers around Carlos, a young man who lives in a youth shelter in the heart of the city, seeking respite from the harshness of life. As Christmas approaches, he longs to spend the day with his mother and sister, who are ensnared in the throes of urban turmoil. Carlos navigates the streets under the protection of Freddy, for whom he sells drugs—but when he cannot live up to Freddy’s macho expectations, he must make a choice between his survival and adhering to societal constructs of masculinity.

Co-presented by the Colombian Film Festival of New York. Special thanks to the Consulate General of Colombia in New York.

 

Reviews

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Current Reviews
JOHN FRANCIS FOX
3 out of 5 stars

VITAL EXAMOF HOW TERRIFYING LIFE CAN BE FOR YOUNG MEN W/O GUIDANCE

December 11, 2023
WRITER-DIRECTOR FABIAN HERNANDEZ MAKES A VERY IMPRESSIVE DEBUT THAT IS SO REMINISCENT OF ITALIAN NEO-REALIST FILMS LIKE VITTORIO DE SICA'S "SHOESHINE" & "THE BICYCLE THIEF" & THE FILMS OF IRANIAN DIRECTOR ABBAS KIAROSTAMI, & THE HEART-RENDING PORTRAYAL OF CARLOS BY DILLAN FELIPE RAMIREZ ESPITIA IS JUST AS TRUE-TO-LIFE AS THE PERFORMANCES GIVEN BY THE CHILDREN IN MR DE SICA'S FILM & THE ONE GIVEN BY JEAN-PIERRE LEAUD IN FRANCOIS TRUFFAUT'S "THE 400 BLOWS." I PARTICULARLY LIKED THE SCENES BETWEEN MR ESPITIA & JUANITA CARRILLO ORTIZ , WHO PLAYS HIS SISTER NICOLE BECAUSE THE TWO OF THEM CONVEYED SO MUCH AFFECTION FOR EACH OTHER, & YET YOU KNEW THAT THERE WAS SO LITTLE THAT THEY COULD DO TO HELP EACH OTHER BECAUSE OF THE LIMITATIONS THEY FACED IN LIFE. WHEN CARLOS CALLS NICOLE'S CLIENTS "SCUMBAGS," & NICOLE POINTS OUT TO HIM THAT THOSE "SCUMBAGS" ARE THE ONES WHO ARE HELPING THEM TO SURVIVE, YOU GET A REALLY POWERFUL SENSE OF THE DESPERATION OF THEIR LIVES. AND THE ANGER EXPRESSED BY JHONATHAN STEVEN RODRIGUEZ WHEN HIS CHARACTER RAGES ABOUT HOW CARLOS "LET" HIMSELF BE ABUSED A CRIMINAL SHOWED HOW TOXIC MASCULINITY CAN BE WHEN IT IS USED TO SHAME LESS POWERFUL MEN. I ALSO NOTICED THE IRONY OF THE ANGRY TONE USED BY THE MAN WHOM CARLOS MEETS IN THE SHELTER IN WHICH HE IS STAYING , & WHO TELLS CARLOS THAT HE NEEDS TO LEARN HOW TO BUILD HIMSELF UP IN ORDER TO AVOID GETTING BEATEN UP. INSTEAD OF USING AN ENCOURAGING TONE, THE ANGRY TONE USED BY THE ACTOR IN THAT SCENE MAKES IT OBVIOUS THAT HIS CHARACTER CONSIDERS IT TO BE A BURDEN TO EXPLAIN THIS TO CARLOS. I ONLY WISH THAT THE FILM HADN'T ENDED SO ABRUPTLY BECAUSE THERE WERE OTHER ASPECTS OF CARLOS' & NICOLE'S LIVES THAT I WOULD HAVE LIKED TO HAVE SEEN EXPLORED (SUCH AS WHAT HAPPENS WHEN THEY GET TO SEE THEIR MOTHER IN JAIL). BUT PERHAPS MR. HERNANDEZ WILL GET TO EXPAND ON CARLOS' LIFE IN THE SAME AY THAT TRUFFAUT EXPANDED ON ANTOINE DOINEL'S LIFE IN HIS POST-"400 BLOWS" FILMS!