Chilean Cinema 2012 #17: El lenguaje del tiempo (2012)

(Chile 2012 86m) DVD

p/d Sebastián Araya w Alexis Moreno, Sebastián Araya c Philippe Rippes ed Camilo Campi s Andrea Pérez

a Elvis Fuentes, Tamara Acosta, Rodrigo Soto, María Jesús

‘The Language of Time’ sounds like the title of a movie or a book written or directed by Raúl Ruiz. I think I just insulted Raúl Ruiz, I’m sorry, mentioning him side by side with this film is almost outrageous and wrong, he doesn’t deserve that kind of treatment now that he’s dead, but it was really what I came back to when I was watching this film: the language of time sounds like a theory or metaphor used in movies by the best chilean director that has ever lived, but the movie takes a stance that seems to be similar to those of the movies from the exiled master of the craft, that it could confuse anyone who isn’t really aware about the issues, themes and overall structure that a Raúl Ruiz film has, and it can confuse a critic or a watcher as well into deeming it deep, interpretative, masterful or even good… heck, I’d call it barely interesting and that would be an enormous favour that I would be giving to the makers and responsibles behind the filming of this piece. Why am I so angry about the whole thing, even though I don’t consider it a piece of shit? Well, because I was actually looking forward to this, and when the DVD arrived for it and I watched it on my TV, I was there contemplating and contemplating, and then it was over and I was completely enraged at to what I actually expected months for until I lost every screening available and then I missed the latest screening due to work, and finally I was able to order it via Bazuca for special delivery at my house, but it wasn’t worth it, I might as well seen it at the theatre, it was really the best option and I didn’t take it because I was lazy, but I swear I won’t be next year in this series (and specially I won’t cram these at the end of December).

How can I describe this experimentation on patience and ambition that couldn’t find a way to achieve whatever it was achieving? Surely it wasn’t critical or festival praise, as most festivals inmediatly dismissed it, reason why this was put in a couple of theaters in the middle of the year and they called it a day, trying to make it interesting for the art-hound crowd (they’ll see and take in anything with the issue of depth and with a title that sounds enigmatic and a premise that is publicized in every venue possible that exploits the arty tropes of time and repetition). The gimmick goes as follows: three characters interact in three iterations of the same basic situation, a woman goes back to the house where she lived with a man.whom she left a long time ago, with the presence of a third man that is in someway connected to both of them, it may be the dark part of the man, the new couple of the woman, a criminal who rapes the woman, the representation of the will to stay together, whatever it’s deeeeep, or so it seems to be when we see the only impressive scene in the whole movie: how the man gives birth to a bloody lump that turns out to be this third dark man – representation of all his hate towards the woman, or his will to love, who the fuck knows? – that runs away under the rain to wash off his blood and go on a raping tirade. What a great and deep movie, isn’t it? Aren’t metaphors fun? Of course they are, but not when they are so obvious that your palm meets your face so many times that you can’t feel it anymore. So, who would want to see this? Well, the flop makes it clear, and I hope that Sebastián Araya gets better and not so snobby or arty next time, it doesn’t suit him.

6/10

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