Mecha (Graciela Borges) and her family are nearing the end of their summer holiday when her cousin Tali and her family are forced to come and live with them. In the stifling heat of the Argentine summer, the two families aimlessly amuse themselves with liquor, kinky crushes, swimming in a filthy swimming pool, hunting and watching TV. No one ever seems to go anywhere; parents and kids lay in bed, half-naked in communal sloth, but there are powerful undercurrents running beneath the seemingly languid country-house atmosphere. One of the all-time great debut films, La Ciénaga announced a daring new voice in Argentine cinema, and constituted a mesmerizing portrait—reminiscent of Buñuel—of the privileged class far gone in decay, unanchored from religion, nature, marital or blood ties. An NYFF39 selection.

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