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The Black Frost

Maximiliano Schonfeld
La helada negra
Argentina 2015 / 82’

The Black Frost, which premiered at Berlinale, is rooted in contemporary fears, which it tries to ease in an unusual way. The protagonist is a woman named Alejandra who arrives in the Argentinian countryside, where a plague is destroying crops. With her appearance, however, everything starts to return to normal. The community's hopes for the harvest are rekindled, and she is looked upon as a savior. People become increasingly interested in her and begin to treat her with reverence. Some see her as a saint, sent to save the people, while others are physically attracted to her, as if she were a goddess of fertility. Rich in symbolism, the film deals with literal threats. In an era in which grain is expected to become the new currency, the prospect of seeds that fail to yield crops would be apocalyptic. This is indeed how the director sets the scene in his drama: the protagonists work hard, starting their day while darkness still reigns outside. They are completely subordinate to the cycles of nature, incapable of rebellion or opposition. Paper money hardly matters here.

Artur Zaborski

Maximiliano Schonfeld

Maximiliano Schonfeld is a film director born in Crespo, Argentina, in 1982. He studied at the prestigious ENERC film school in Buenos Aires. Before getting involved in cinema for good, he directed commercials and television series. His 2012 full-length directorial debut, Germania, caused a sensation at international film festivals and landed him a number of awards, including at the Festival in Hamburg. His second film, The Black Frost, premiered at this year's Berlinale.

Filmography

2010 Entreluces Esnorquel Invernario (short)

2012 Germania

2013 Auster (short)

2016 Czarny mróz / La helada negra / The Black Frost

Cast & Crew

director Maximiliano Schonfeld
screenplay Maximiliano Schonfeld
cinematography Gustavo Rejan, Soledad Rodríguez
editing Anita Remón
sound Nahuel Palenque
cast Ailín Salas, Lucas Schell, Benigno Lell, Dario Wendler, Mario Wendler
producer Barbara Francisco
production Pasto
sales Still Moving
language Spanish
colouration colour