Wednesday, December 7, 2011

SCN: With EVERY SONG TALKS ABOUT ME, Jonás Trueba nicely nails young/dumb love

The first time TrustMovies encountered the work of Jonás Trueba, it was two years ago when this young filmmaker acted as co-screenwriter on his father Fernando's film The Dancer and the Thief (a movie of which TM was not overly fond). Fernando bounced back with last year's SCN offering Chico and Rita, and now Jonás has given us what I suspect is, for him, a much more personal movie about a young man's attempts to come to terms with love and loss and some kind of acceptable life. It's called EVERY SONG TALKS ABOUT ME -- and if that title doesn't nail the exquisite narcissism of youth, what would?

Trueba the younger, pictured at right, has made a smart choice of his leading man in the person of Oriol Vila (below, who played the young mole placed by the police in the theatrical troupe in last year's Paper Birds). Senor Vila possesses an adorable face (atop a handsome body) which he can scrunch up into all sorts of annoyed (and, yes, annoying) grimaces until you sometimes want to shout, "Hey fuckhead: Grow up!" Well, yes: He's trying. And Vila and his character Ramiro are so real and often so funny/
silly that he finally wins you over.

As does his former-but-still-in-the-picture love interest, Andrea. She's played by Bárbara Lennie (below, left), from the 2009 SCN's The Condemned and currently part of The Skin I Live In. Ms Lennie is an actress of such quiet possession that she makes a rather perfect foil for Vila (and the other cursory ladies -- charming, all of them -- who flit in and out of his life and the film).

While some of my compatriots, most of whom reflect an older audience, groused a bit about "these kids and their ridiculous concerns," I can only suggest that they -- and you -- think back to their/your own youth and contemplate for a moment. Weren't we all pretty damn ridiculous and self-involved? If you manage this, for even a few moments, I think you'll find yourself smiling and more than willing to accompany Ramiro on his quest.

Should you tag along, you'll be treated to a simply smashing finale: one of the most wonderful combinations of visuals, dialog and music that I've wintessed in years. This is a breathtaking scene that grows and crests until, with utter fervor, it explodes. Bravo, Señor Trueba: You've achieved something special!

Every Song Talks About Me screens twice during Spanish Cinema Now at the Walter Reade Theater: Saturday, December 10, at 6pm and Wednesday, December 14, at 1:30pm.

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