Old Cats

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With his breakthrough 2009 feature, The Maid, Chilean director Sebastin Silva demonstrated a knack for deadpan one-upmanship and class dissections. If his follow-up (codirected and cowritten with Pedro Peirano) never quite hits its satirical bull's-eyes with the same force, this familial farce doesn't exactly scream slump either. But Old Cats does suggest, that the young filmmaker needs something more substantial than gold-digging, coke-snorting girlfriends (played by The Maid's master-and-servant duo, Claudia Celedn and Catalina Saavedra) or an elderly mother (Blgica Castro) descending into senility to bring out his best. As one half of the couple tries to bilk her mentally unraveling mom, long-standing grudges and power plays take on an Albee-esque flavor that nonetheless lacks a distinctive bite.—David Fear

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