sun 09/08/2020

LFF 2012: 3 | reviews, news & interviews

LFF 2012: 3

LFF 2012: 3

A dysfunctional family yarn from Uruguay promises more than it delivers

'And I care because....?' Anaclara Ferreyra Palfy in '3'

With the gloriously deadpan comedies 25 Watts and Whisky, co-writers and directors Juan Pablo Rebella and Pablo Stoll were the leading lights of Uruguayan cinema, not exactly heading the kind of renaissance seen in other Latin American countries in the 2000s – the country’s industry is miniscule – but certainly making two of the region’s most idiosyncratic films. Then Rebella killed himself, a tragedy that threw his friend into a grief that seemed to end his career also. So it’s wonderful to see Stoll back in business, even if his new film doesn’t pack quite the punch we’d hoped.

3 concerns a family in extremis, the number referring to mum, dad and teenager daughter, each struggling to move behind the parents’ divorce. Dentist dad Rodolfo’s second marriage is about to end, leaving this jocular misfit all at sea: ex-wife Graciela is still bitter and lonely, spending her days visiting a dying aunt in the hospital; daughter Ana, the most dysfunctional, seems to be on a downward spiral fuelled by disinterest – with school, her parents, friends, boyfriend, even her selection for the national handball team. Drifting through life on auto-pilot, Ana constantly lies to and manipulates those around her, not for any substantial gain, merely because she’s bored and wants to drift onto the next round of ennui.

This is glossily shot, confidently paced (as of old, Stoll won’t rush a plot when he can dawdle) and with what I assume is a Uruguayan rock soundtrack that adds an enjoyably incongruous verve to proceedings. It’s fun to watch. The trouble is that the film comes with an air of mystery, of expectation of tragedy or despair, that isn’t resolved. One can argue that there is a greater integrity at play, but the denouement on offer feels like a cop-out.

Follow Demetrios Matheou on Twitter

The film comes with an air of mystery, of expectation of tragedy or despair, that isn’t resolved

rating

Editor Rating: 
2
Average: 2 (1 vote)

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