The Dead Man and Being Happy: New York Film Festival 2012

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New York Film Festival 2012: The Dead Man and Being Happy

New York Film Festival 2012: The Dead Man and Being Happy


Javier Rebollo’s darkly comic road movie opens with an immediately gripping Conversation-style long shot, taking around 15 intriguing minutes to explain the mysterious motivations of its moody middle-aged protagonist. Santos (José Sacristán), it turns out, is a cancer-stricken hit man who botched his most recent job and has embarked on a car trip across Argentina—half getaway, half existential quest—in the company of an impulsive woman (Roxana Blanco) with some troubles of her own. The setup is killer, the vignette-heavy remainder (American tourists, a retirement village, Nazis) much less so.—Keith Uhlich

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