In the last years, The Argentinian cinema is growing by huge steps. Being Argentinian and studying cinema in my country, makes me fell obligated to support the national productions.
On this occasion I find interesting to write about the last national production “Black Snow” by Martin Hodara. A project that took 6 years to get form the script, to the cinema.
The film revolves around a reunion. Marcos (Leonardo Sbaraglia), together with his wife Laura (the Spanish Laia Costa), come back to convince Salvador (Ricardo Darin) to sell the house where they lived as children (and in which Salvador lives) for a big amount of money. This reunion leads them to uncover some issues of the past that were not totally overcome.
Reason 1: Locations. Black Snow is filmed in the Catalan Pyrenees, representing southern Argentina. The panoramic view made by Hodara are amazing, it constantly leads us to wonder where is that place.
The funny thing is that all the insides of the cabin were filmed in a studio in Buenos Aires. They did a replica of it and during three weeks they film all the scenes that happened inside (it took 7 weeks in total to roll the film).
Reason 2. Narrative resource – Flashbacks. This feature is perfectly implemented. Without too many explanations, one is able to locate easily in the time that presents itself to him. The characters of the past and the present are similar, which helps us to better understand that we are talking about them in their youth. Something that fascinated me, was the resource integrated both eras: the past as the imagination of Laura in the present. This scene gives gooseflesh.
Reason 3. The main characters. Ricardo Darin is one of the most appreciated and important actors of Argentina. Generally, when I see a movie in which he acts, I see the same character, but this time I was surprised. Darin’s interpretation is haughty and distant.
On the other hand, Sbaraglia, is the main character, no doubt. Darin excels in a part of the story, but always told from the point of view of Marcos (Sbaraglia). The construction of the character is so complete, that leads to generate surprise at the conclusion of the story.
And finally, the talented Laia Costa (known for the movie “Victoria” – in my opinion excellent film and interpretation built in Berlin) plays a role of defender of her husband, taking control at the end of the film and closing all Doubts generated throughout it. Role and key character in Black Snow.
Reason 4. Argentinian Films. This film is the sign that people are wrong to say that “Argentine films are bad.” It is a complex and solid proposal. Assertively resolved beyond personal tastes.
Reason 5. The end – Surprise effect. (SPOILER) During the beginning and ending, the director takes us to a conclusion, with indications that assure more who is guilty of killing his younger brother, Juan. Mainly, because as they are giving information about this death, they are leaving Salvador and Marcos more evident as a victim. But the final spin can be very interesting and even surprising to some (personally I did not like it, it was a set of exaggerated and even morbid resolutions that can be predictable).
Seeing this realization, it came to my mind two films that have a very similar aesthetic, as well as the theme: “The Aura” by Fabian Bielinsky and “The Body” Oriol Paulo. All three films are thrillers and suspense genres. Most of the scenesare developed in the forest. The photograph in all of them is cold. But what relates them most is its theme generates. The starting point and the main theme on the same point: a death.
Hope you enjoy it.
Thanks for reading!