Manuela Martelli places the viewer in a historical moment fraught with anxiety: the early years of Augusto Pinochet’s regime in Chile. Her narrative presents Pinochet’s oppressive reign from the unusual and surprising perspective of Carmen (a superb Aline Küppenheim), an upper-middle-class woman whose life begins to unravel after local priest Father Sánchez (Hugo Medina) implores her to use her summer beach house, under renovation, to hide an injured young man (Nicolás Sepúlveda) whom she comes to suspect is a victim of political persecution. As Carmen descends into danger, she experiences a gradual moral awakening. Martelli’s film is a taut, evocative, and impressively assured depiction of the inescapable, ever-tightening noose of patriarchal, governmental dictatorship and how its effects gradually bleed into our everyday experiences. A Kino Lorber release.
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