Saturday, March 11, 2006

Duck Season directed by Fernando Eimbcke

Not a whole lot happens in Duck Season, the debut feature from Mexican writer/director Fernando Eimbcke. But then, that's largely by design. After all, it is a movie about a lazy Sunday afternoon. But there's another reason for Eimbcke's lackadaisical approach-he's making a clear homage to the early films of Jim Jarmusch. With its black-and-white photography, static camerawork, deadpan sense of humor, and blackouts in between scenes, Duck Seasonaspires to be nothing less than Stranger than Paradise 2: South of the Border. Needless to say, the film doesn't have the freshness of Jarmusch's debut, but taken on its own terms, it's an amusing comedy enhanced by appealing performances from its four leads.

Set almost entirely in one apartment in a Mexico City housing complex, Duck Season follows the wholly ordinary adventures of two 14-year-old boys, Flama (Daniel Miranda) and his best friend Moko (Diego Cataño). Flama's mother has a party to attend, so she leaves the two kids at home to look after themselves. No sooner have plopped down in front of the TV for a rousing round of video games when there's a knock at the door. It's Rita (Danny Perea), the cute 16-year-old girl from down the hall, asking to use their stove to bake a cake. She's reluctantly granted admittance and Flama and Moko return to their game, only to be interrupted again, this time by a poorly-timed power failure. Deciding to break for lunch, they call the local pizza place and break out the stopwatch to make sure the pie arrives within the 30-minute guarantee. The pizza delivery guy Ulises (Enrique Arreola) reaches the door one minute past the deadline. The boys refuse to pay and Ulises refuses to leave without his money. So for the rest of the afternoon, these four oddballs hang out in Flama's apartment, swapping stories, contemplating their lives and getting stoned on a batch of marijuana-laced brownies.

You can find the review here

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