Raúl Perrone – Favula (2014)

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“Hypnotic” is the best word to describe Favula, the latest work from director Raúl Perrone, which comes with a recommendation from none other than Apichatpong Weerasethakul – though he used the more Joe-like epithet, “bliss.” Somewhat of a secret outside of his native Argentina, Perrone has made more than 30 movies, and in recent years has reinvented his cinema, by looking back to the past, and in doing so pointing to the future. Standing apart from any other film made this year, with its magical handmade aesthetic, Favula recalls Méliès, or silent Fritz Lang, but at the same time evokes recent silent, stage-bound aesthetics like Raya Martin’s Independencia. Loosely based on an African fable, and shot employing rear-projections techniques, Favula’s simple events take place mostly in an isolated house and a nearby jungle: a marginal family’s life is interrupted by the arrival of a teenaged girl. On top of the minimalist, pulsating images, Perrone layers a maximalist soundtrack that encompasses both the sounds of the jungle and non-diegetic music (indelible contemporary songs that appeared in his last work, the cumbia punk opera P3ND3JO5). The result is a wholly unique, mythical universe of danger, passion and magic. Continue reading

Raúl Perrone – P3ND3JO5 (2013)

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Skater musical from Buenos Aires suburb. In this silent black-and-white 4:3 format film, the hypnotising soundtrack drives the images. Love, desire, drama, faces. Perrone, the godfather of Argentine independent cinema, reinvents it in his 35th film.

Argentinian director Raúl Perrone calls P3ND3JO5 (‘pendejos’: slang for teen, but also idiot or worse epithets) a ‘cumbia opera in three acts with coda’. Cumbia is rhythmic Columbian music that became immensely popular in Latin America during the 1940s.
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