Chilean Cinema 2014 #25 – El Huaso (2012)

The Huaso

(Chile, Canada 2012 78m) Cine UC

p Sergeo Kirby, Carlo Guillermo Proto, Arianne Shaffer d Carlo Guillermo Proto w Carlo Guillermo Proto, Gustavo Guillermo Proto ed Ariel Escalante, Carlo Guillermo Proto c Carlos Ferrand, Carlo Guillermo Proto, Benjamin R. Taylor s Mitchell Akiyama

The figure of the ‘huaso’ is usually considered among the manliest and mostly archaic elements of Chilean culture, a brute, someone who is at the same time innocent, unintelligent, but also vivacious and always happy-go-lucky kinda guy from the countryside. Now, it’s not actually surprising that the main character of this film is exactly the opposite of that, though everyone calls him and considers him part of the ‘huaso’ culture. We are talking about someone who is battling a serious depression, but who has a whole family that supports him and tries to convince him that the things that he is saying aren’t an excuse for him finding enough courage to kill himself, a fate that his father followed as well. The son of this man is the director of this film, a portrait of a consuming doubt, a constant wait, a thing that always seems to be about to blow up, someone who thinks is entitled to his own life due to reasons that are never confirmed nor denied until the last minutes of the film. Death, that suddenly, becomes the finishing blow of this movie, but after it was already released, as it premiered on TV in Canada, the next day the protagonist killed himself. The film is powerful and features conversations and landscapes that are beautiful and at the same time melancholic, just like the still face of our protagonist, who we see contemplating the death and at the same time living the small moments of what makes him happy: being a huaso. Highly recommended.

8/10

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