Another of Alonso’s minimalist parables in the form of a slow, largely mute and obscurely motivated oddyssey, this chronicles the journey of a middle-aged sailor from the Atlantic freighter on which he works, via Ushuaia, the southernmost town in Argentina, to the remote and snowy hamlet that was his birthplace. After years of travelling, this loner, who communicates with a bottle of booze more comfortably than with humans, wants to see if his mother is still alive. When he finally reaches home, he not only finds her dying and unable to recognise him, but discovers that he has a sister he never knew existed, a young woman lost in her own sad and abused world. The imagery is meticulous, the pacing carefully measured, and the mood generally melancholy and enigmatic. Whether the film adds up to more than the some of its parts is moot; Alonso certainly seems keen not to give away any superflous information.
Lisandro Alonso, Salvador Roselli
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