CineLatino 2014: The Desert
Argentina, 2013, 98 Minute Running Time
Language: in Spanish with English subtitles
Official selection: SXSW Film Festival, Fantasia Film Festival.
It's a mad, post-apocalyptic world of brutality and undead outside the confines of a makeshift shelter in The Desert. What begins as a unified trio of survivors – perhaps even an idealistic version of polyamory – splinters under the pressures of fear from the evils outside, and fractures under the loneliness and lies rooted in self-preservation inside. A far cry from genre-typical, The Desert shape-shifts from ill-fated love story to guttural scream as the eerily even-keeled suspense drives the household over the edge. This Argentinian horror film features only four characters stranded in a barren wasteland: Jonathan and Ana share a bed separated from Axel by only insect netting erected to deter the real-world versions of the thousands of flies tattooed as a time-marker on the odd man out. The fourth, a zombie whom Ana names Pythagoras, arrives climatically, when the two men capture him as a fulfillment of a bet. House rules created in transparent attempts to regulate lives in turmoil provide glimpses of self ... until silent, unrequited love breaks character and unravels the thin veil of passion and inescapable pain.
In stories plagued with monsters and philosophy, rules are futile because perception defines action. If a film's connectivity is relative to its humanity, love's universal appeal resides in unconventional stories such as these.
DIRECTOR: Christoph Behl
Screenwriter: Christoph Behl
Principal Cast: Victoria Almeida, Lautaro Delgado, Lucas Lagré, William Prociuk