Rosi's adaptation of García Márquez's novel is an absorbing and unusual murder mystery set within a tiny South American community. A wealthy and mysterious stranger (Everett, cringingly affected) chooses a local girl (Muti) as his wife. No virgin, she is returned to her family on the wedding night, and the brothers determine to kill her previous lover. They brag their intentions around the village, yet no one intervenes. The tale is narrated, through interviews and flashbacks, by the dead man's best friend, returned home after a long absence to find the villagers still nursing their guilt. The simple facts hold no answers; the real clues lie in a web of tradition and centuries-old conditioning. The omnipresent Catholicism, the empty macho stances of the men, the strains of violence underlying strong familial bonds: these propel the action, giving the film an almost mystical aura. Although occasionally so languorously photographed that it almost grinds to a halt, the film is ultimately memorable.