Each of us in the neighborhood had one special individual we wanted to be. For me it was Batman; for my friend, they wanted to be Superman. There was a girl down the street who idolized Wonder Woman. She would wear a metal bracelet on each of her wrists and pretend she was blocking any type of projectiles. During those years everyone’s idol was a superhero; no one wanted to be the neighborhood’s butcher or tailor. As far as I can remember there was only one real person I used to be somewhat obsessive about, wanting to be them. It was Bruce Lee; how I used to wish I was just like him. Seeing him as the sidekick Kato in the Green Hornet series, I was fascinated with his dual identities of being a chauffeur but also having the capabilities to take down a villain with his bare hands. Then there were his martial arts movies where I would study all of his moves and try to reproduce them in the safety of my bedroom when no on was nearby. I took a jump rope, knotting it in the center to shorten its length, so I could use it as nunchakus. My idea was to blend into a crowd but if I was ever threatened I could immediately subdue the perpetrator. Now in my adult life there has not been anyone I have wanted to be, unlike the character in this film. UNEMPLOYED Raul Peralta, played by Alfredo Castro (Post Mortem, No), was convinced he could be Tony Manero from the movie Saturday Night Fever. When he found out a contest was going to be held to find the Chilean Tony Manero, Raul would not let anyone or anything stop him from winning the prize. This film festival winner from Chile was a bit freaky for me. There was a mix of drama, comedy, nudity, with some intense violence; it took me by surprise to tell you the truth. Part of the cast included Hector Morales (Super, My Last Round) as Goyo, Elsa Poblete (A Cab for Three, No) as Wilma and Amparo Noguera (Post Mortem, A Thief and his Wife) as Cony; each of them did a good job in portraying characters who were lost, broken individuals. I do not know if it was the script or maybe just the whole concept to the story, but it kept me engaged in a warped type of way. This could be attributed to the darkness that played a part in several scenes. I would bounce from being amused to being horrified based on what was taking place in a particular scene. Obsession is not thought of as a positive thing; I can see why based on this movie. Spanish was spoken with English subtitles.
2 3/4 stars — DVD
The amount of money spent on marketing political candidates these days is obscene to me. There are countries that do not come close to having such amounts in their treasury. It seems to me that the only people who can run for office are wealthy individuals. This concerns me because in my experience some wealthy people have a hard time relating to the average person. For example, the man who bought Princess Diana’s dress that she wore when she was dancing at the White House with John Travolta. At a winning bid of $360,000.00, a gentleman bought it to surprise and cheer up his wife. How many of us can do such a thing? Where I find this excessive, I have the same feeling about the money needed to fund a campaign. It seems the issues are not enough to determine whether a person will vote for a candidate; it also depends on who does a better job of marketing the politician. One of the reasons I grew to enjoy this historical drama was seeing what a grassroots advertising campaign can accomplish. Nominated for best foreign language film with the Academy Awards, this film took place in Chile, 1988. Military dictator Augusta Pinochet had been in power for fifteen years and needed to show the world that his government was legitimate. A referendum was scheduled, but would anybody opposing Pinochet survive the election? Gael Garcia Bernal (Bad Education, Y Tu Mama Tamben) played young advertising executive Rene Saavedra, who had the task of creating a campaign that would not get censored. He created the “No” campaign. Starring Alfredo Castro (It was the Son, Tony Manero) as Lucho Guzman and Antonia Zegers (Post Mortem, The Life of Fish) as Veronica Carvajal; the story used humor, actual footage and a faux 1980’s style of filming to draw the viewer into a fascinating time in Chile’s history. I had a hard time getting into the story at first; it felt slow to me. Once the campaign started to come together I was enthralled with the genius of it. With excellent acting, the movie became inspirational for me. The question was could creativity, strong beliefs and dedication triumph over money. Spanish with English subtitles.