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Jauja

Jauja
The Tourneés Festival is made possible with the support of the Cultural Services of the French Embassy in the U.S., the Centre National du Cinéma et de l'Image Animée (CNC), the French American Cultural Fund, Florence Gould Foundation and Highbrow Entertainment.

Part meditative, realist anti-western, part metaphysical, Tarkovsky-esque head-scratcher, Lisandro Alonso’s fifth feature, Jauja (pronounced “How-Ha”), is an arthouse masterpiece with enough traditional narrative momentum to hold sway before delivering a mystical one-two punch of mind-bending abstraction. With its richly saturated, meticulously composed sublime landscapes—somehow at once sweeping and claustrophobic—this might be the year’s best-looking film, but it’s also a brilliantly sneaky critique of egomaniacal control.

Viggo Mortensen portrays 19th-century Danish captain Gunnar Dinesen, who is leading an undefined expedition into the forbidding Patagonian desert with his beautiful young daughter in tow. When the girl flees camp with a handsome soldier, he mounts a one-man posse to recover her as a mysterious Colonel Kurtz–like figure wreaks bloody havoc across the countryside. The film’s opening scroll identifies the titular “Land of Plenty” as a mythical earthly paradise that leads all who try to find it to become irretrievably lost, a good indication of where things might be heading. Like Dinesen himself, you’ll probably feel a little lost by film’s end, but the haunting images of Jauja will likely not leave you any time soon.

— Michelle Devereaux, The Skinny

Jauja

Tue September 27, 2016, 7:30 only, Muenzinger Auditorium

Argentina, 2014, in Spanish [w/ Eng Subtitles], Color, 109 min, 1.33 : 1

Director: Lisandro Alonso, Writer: Lisandro Alonso, Writer: Fabian Casas, Cast: Viggo Mortensen, Ghita Nørby, Viilbjork Mallin Agger, Adrián Fondari, Esteban Bigliardi

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