EMBRACE OF THE SERPENT -- from Colombia and one of the five nominees for the recent Best Foreign Language Film Oscar-- made the Academy's cut. It's one of those movies you will have seen nothing quite like: A two-hour-plus trip down (or is it up?) the Amazon, with a native guide the likes of which you also will not have encountered, in which the voyage is split into two tours of duty, with two different white explorers but the same Shaman guide. This is because these trips take place maybe 40 or 50 years apart.
Jacques Toulemonde Vidal) by Ciro Guerra , shown at and shot in the kind of black-and-white cinematography (by David Gallego) that will pin your eyes to the enormous beauty on screen and hold them there for the film's full 125-minute running time, this movie moves back and forth between time periods with ease and skill, combining a documentary-like look and feel with so much exotic beauty and the kind of simple, effective storytelling that we don't really get so much of anymore.
Yauenkü Migue), to a native shaman, Karamakate, who is then begged to save the explorer's life.
Nilbio Torres, above, is slowly persuaded to help bring Theodore (Jan Bijvoet, below, center) back to life and then further help him to find the famous healing plant called Yakruma.
Brione Davis, above) and the older version of Karamakate are taken prisoner there and witness -- in fact, contribute to -- some awful goings-on. It is interesting that religion accounts for the most violent parts of the film.
Oscilloscope Laboratories, after opening in New York, Los Angeles and elsewhere across the country, will play here in Southern Florida beginning this Friday, March 11, in Miami at the O Cinema, the Miami Beach Cinematheque and the Bill Cosford Cinema (it will also play the Tower Theater in Miami come March 14); and in Hollywood at the Cinema Paradiso. On March 18 it will hit Lake Worth at the Lake Worth Playhouse and Boca Raton at the Living Room Theaters. No matter where you live across the country, the movie is likely to show up there. Click here then click SCREENINGS on the bar atop the page to see all currently scheduled playdates, with cities/theaters listed.