Amazon Holiday

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Rudo y Cursi

Q: What’s the movie about?

A: This movie examines the complex sibling rivalry of two half-brothers (Gael Garcia Bernal & Diego Luna), which inspires them to find both greatness and failure, on and off the soccer field, as they compete to be the first son who is able to build their mother her dream house.

Q: Who’s in the movie?

A: Gael Garcia Bernal, Diego Luna, Guillermo Francella, Jessica Mas, Adriana Paz, Dolores Heredia

Q: Is this movie worth the price of admission?

A: PhotobucketGo! If you're tired of the same old predictable stories that constantly come out of the Hollywood machine, and you want to see a story that has never been done before, then I hope you have the heart-- or rather the stomach-- for this intense character study of what brotherly love-hate can lead a man to do.

Q: Will this movie make me laugh?

A: In some ways, it's a dark comedy... which means it's for the most part not funny. But you'll laugh your butt off if you're a jaded or twisted SOB. (Which I recognize is an endorsement for at least 23% of you curmudgeons to go see this film.)

Q: Will this movie make me cry?

A: As empathetic as you'll feel for these cynical characters, they're not nearly likable enough to consider shedding a tear over.

Q: Will this movie be up for any awards?

A: I'm going to go out on a limb and predict that this wins (yes, I said wins) Best First Feature at the Independent Spirit Awards. Come back in 10 months to see if I know what I'm talking about.

Q: How is the Acting?

A: The breakout star for American audiences is going to be 54-year-old, Guillermo Francella, who is actually quite well known in Argentina. He is by far the most likable character in this batch of selfish misfits. According to the director, our two leads, who are reunited with their creators from Y Tu Mama Tambien for the first time, are deliberately cast against type, so as not to feel like a repeat of the aforementioned film. "Rudo" which means "tough" is played by Diego Luna, while "Cursi" which means "corny" is played by Gael Garcia Bernal. I can only take this to mean that in real life, Bernal is the tough one, and Luna is the corny one. If that's the case, they are both very convincing as their counter-types. But having seen them in person, badgering each other non-stop at a Q & A, I think their actual character types are "Laurel" & "Hardy."

Q: How is the Directing?

A: For a first time director, Carlos Cuaron already comes off like an old pro. Clearly the directing gene runs in his whole family, and not just to his brother Alfonso.

Q: How is the story/script?

A: This beautifully written script uses soccer as a metaphor for everything important in life, love, and relationships, with the ongoing battle between the shooter and the goalie at its center. At all levels for one to succeed, the other must fail, and so we are introduced to the film's subtle exploration of the duality of being human. Every character and every relationship in the film is one thing on the outside, and it's opposite underneath. The slick characters are sweet, the strong characters are weak, and the tough characters are corny. Similarly, the loving brothers share an extreme rivalry , but right when you think they couldn't hate each other more, expressions of their love rise to the surface-- albeit in confusing and indirect ways. What I like about this story is that it's both easy to follow, and filled with subtexts which you can think about and debate afterward. The conclusion is not spelled out for you, yet it is incredibly accessible, so you get to feel smart (though not brilliant) for having gotten it.

Q: Where can I see the trailer?


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