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To Kill a Man

Alejandro Fernández Almendras
Matar a un hombre
Chile, France 2014 / 82’

Throughout the history of cinema, there has been no shortage of lone avengers – Charles Bronson, Clint Eastwood, Uma Thurman... The Chilean Jorge, a typical beta male, is not part of this group. Far from the macho archetype, he humbly lowers his head when he is being threatened by the ringleader of a local gang. His son cannot accept this and ends up in the hospital with a gunshot wound to his leg. The real horror begins, however, when, after 18 months, his torturer gets out of prison and is looking for revenge for his "injuries." Increasingly serious threats hang over Jorge’s family like a curse. Where the state does not help its citizens, the hero must eventually take on the role of the patriarch. However, is everyone capable of killing another person? The director’s unhurried, muted observation does not bring us any closer to an answer. Although the growing tension is suggestive of the conventions of the thriller genre, Alejandro Fernández Almendras’s film is the polar opposite of the classic tale of revenge. There are no shootouts or car chases. There is only the darkness of the night and the eternal dilemma of how to choose when all the choices are bad.

Robert Mróz

awards

Sundance FF 2014 - World Cinema Grand Jury Prize; Rotterdam IFF 2014 - KNF Prize; Fribourg IFF 2014 - Special Jury Prize, Don Quijote Prize; Miami IFF 2014 - Miami Future Cinema Critics Award; Cartagena de Indias IFF 2014 - FIPRESCI Award, Best Director Award; Rencontres du Cinéma Sud-Américain de Marseilles 2014 - Jury Special Award, Best Actor; IndieLisboa IFF 2014 - Feature Film Grand Prize City of Lisbon

Alejandro Fernández Almendras

Born in 1971, Alejandro Fernández Almendras is a Chilean director who completed his studies in communications at the University of Chile. He worked as a film critic, a photographer, and a journalist before finally turning the inspiration of Abbas Kiarostami, Hou Hsiao-Hsien and Pablo Trapero into action. He won awards at Sundance, Havana, Viña del Mar and Punta del Este for his debut film Huacho, and also at San Sebastián and Toulouse for his second film Sentados frente al fuego. In order to give audiences a bit of a respite, he is now filming a musical comedy.

Filmography

2007 Lo que trae la lluvia (short)

2009 Huacho

2011 Sentados frente al fuego

2014 Zabić człowieka / Matar a un hombre / To Kill a Man

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Official site

Cast & Crew

director Alejandro Fernández Almendras
screenplay Alejandro Fernández Almendras
cinematography Inti Briones
editing Alejandro Fernández Almendras, Soledad Salfate
music Pablo Vergara
cast Daniel Candia, Daniel Antivilo, Ariel Mateluna, Alejandra Yañez
producer El Remanso
production Guillaume de Seille, Eduardo Villalobos
sales Film Factory Entertainment
language Spanish
colouration colour