Friday, June 24, 2016

Embrace of the Serpent (El abrazo de la serpiente) (2015)

Director: Ciro Guerra. Cast: Nilbio Torres, Jan Bijvoet, Antonio Bolivar, Brionne Davis. 124 min. Not rated. Colombia/Venezuela/Argentina. Adventure/History.

I get it: showing the lush jungles of the Amazon in panoramic black-and-white contrast, automatically provokes the viewer to imagine how beautiful the geography actually is in color. But this backdrop for the parallel narration of two real-life German scientists 40 years apart, guided by the same shaman at young and old ages, on an expedition to find a healing plant, was so lengthy, during the final third it had me gasping for the movie to be over. And an artsy 2001: Space Odyssey-like ending really didn't help.

PS: After Mustang, Son of Saul, Theeb and A War, this concludes my review of this year's foreign-language Oscar-nominated movies. And I don't remember ever giving any such nominee in previous years a bad score. (Instead of Son of Saul, probably Mustang should've won.)

Mo says:

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