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Bogotá 2016

Ed Wood for the new generations
If it wasn`t for "After party", this would easily be the worst movie in history. Jaw-droppingly bad in every aspect, from writing (in case they did write something before filming), to acting, to directing, to the appallingly fake stages, oh, kill me now. "Quién paga el pato" is perhaps the most respectable of the three, but it still is a confusing, underachieved and pretentious beyond belief failure. "Zapping" is woeful, Basile's sense of humor falls flat every time and is irritating after ten minutes, and also it's sad to see such good actors shaming themselves in dumb roles like the ones they`re given. I sincerely hope Basile never grabs a camera again in this millenia. And don't get me started on "La Venus", wich is perhaps the worst piece of garbage ever to be filmed. You have to see it to believe it, folks. This guys make Ed Wood look like Orson Welles.

La primera noche

Decent, worthy filmmaking
At last colombian filmmakers decide to tackle the difficult subject of the recent history of violence and forced displacement Colombia is facing, and do it with respect for the dignity and humanity of their subjects. Unlike the recent fiascoes of the Trianas, which made fun of their caracthers and turned them into dumb sketches in order to make the audience laugh, Restrepo tells the story of two peasants forced to move to the city with respect and honesty. Surprisingly good performaces by all of the cast, especially Carriazo, Méndez and Lizarazo, allow the story to be heartfelt and moving, if not too cold. Sadly, the pace is very contrived and it makes this 80-minute film feel like a two-and-a-half hour movie, and Restrepo's direction shows too much influence from his work in television, hence making everything look a little phony. It's not a perfect movie, it has very visible flaws and weaknesses, but it's a step up in the recent display of crap colombian filmmakers have been handing out. Let's try to keep this up, shall we?

Como el gato y el ratón

Another irresponsible bad flick
The Trianas are like a plague to Colombian cinema. Jorge Alí has made almost unbearable pieces of crap on Tv, stage and film, and now (uh, oh) comes his son, Rodrigo, with this once again irresponsible film about how the poor people of Colombia are nothing but savages, uncapable of dealing with something so simple as having electric power on their neighborhood. This one is a mean-spirited movie, wich makes fun and turns into a comedy the difficulties that the lower classes of Colombia have to deal with in their daily life. All of the characters lack any dignity, spirit or, for that fact, anything good: They're all reduced to cliches and sketches in order to amuse the audience, with no thought whatsoever given by Triana to make them three-dimensional, dignified, troubled human beings. ¡¡It even has a role for "Betty la fea" in there!! On a narrative and technichal level, the movie does represent an improvement on most colombian cinema, but it's a pity that this goods service such a morally bankrupt and corrupt movie, made by the upper class as a school assignment on the lower class: just like looking at frogs and going "Ewww... look how this savages kill each other". Shame on Mr. Triana.

Bolivar soy yo

Lousy, dishonest filmmaking
This is the kind of movie i fear the most. Arrogant and Irresponsible, it presents a sketch of the colombian conflict so cliched and dumb it represents an insult to all Colombian people. The performances are godawul, from Grisales (her naked scene is absolutely pitiful), to Bejarano, to Fanny Mickey (who looks right out of a Tim Burton nightmare), to Díaz, who makes a notable effort to bring life to a character so one-dimensional, so cliched and so badly written all he´s left to work with is a mustache. Not to mention the gratuitous ending, a gore fest so cheesy that it would make Ed Wood cringe. It fails in all ways, cinematography, art direction, costumes, makeup, editing, and most of all directing, Jorge Alí Triana has always been a lousy filmmaker but at least his previous movies had some dignity. I can't say anything good about this waste of money, except that i hope Colombian filmmakers learn a lesson about honesty, integrity and responsability from this mean-intended fiasco.

Directo Chapinero

Aw! Godawfulness at its worst
This lousy little excuse for a movie becomes histerically funny by trying to "reinvent" colombian cinema and falling flat-faced on everything its trying to avoid; bad writing, terrible acting, amateur directing, it's almost like a prequel to "After Party: the movie", now universally acknowledged as the worst film ever made. Now this one isn't as godawful as that one, but not by much: We can only hope they learn from this lesson and start taking this craft seriously. I just saw "Cuando vuelvas de tus muertes", the follow-up to this one, and it's not much better. Oh lord.

Kalibre 35

Lousy, Lousy, Lousy
How sad to see a movie that obviously took a lot of suffering to get made fall flat on its face like this. This is another one of those films made with the dumb pretension of "reinventing" colombian cinema which then revels on the flaws it's trying so hard to correct. There's a story here, obviously, but it gets lost in the director's pretentious attempts to make a commercial, yet intellectual, "art" film. The editing is pathetic, music-video like, and its portrayal of young colombian filmmakers is insulting: They`re seen here as a generation of arrogant, drug-addicted airheads; terrible writing, self-indulgent amateurish directing, and some of the worst performances seen by an entire cast in the entire history of Colombian cinema, kill this project, wich is no doubt, a labour of love. But then again, if the director loves his project, ¿Why the hell does he cast actors that have proven an absolute lack of talent like Juanita Acosta and Juan Carlos Vargas? Make no mistake, this is a really bad movie filled with good intentions, spoiled by the lack of confidence and honesty of its director. Shame.

Funeral siniestro

A creepy masterpiece
Jairo Pinilla's first and best film, made on a tiny budget and on a shoestring, is by far the greatest of all colombian thrillers. Sure, it relies on cheesy makeup and effects, but the way it's told, the power of its images and the strenght of its narrative revealed Pinilla as the most talented of Colombian filmmakers, a man with a personal vision of the genre so unique that it could never be imitated. A must-see for true genre fans and a great introduction to one the greatest craftsmen Colombia has ever produced.

Cóndores no entierran todos los días

Greatness in true form
The greatest colombian movie ever made, "Cóndores" is a shining portrait of one of the most violent eras in latinamerican history, brilliantly directed, with class and measure, by Francisco Norden. Frank Ramírez gives an unforgettable performance as León María Lozano, a simple man whose faith to the party and his misconceived principles lead him on a savage killing spree and turn him into the one of the biggest assassins of a violent time. We can sense through him the confusion, the anger and the need for redemption that led to a war that bled and still bleeds Colombia to death. Adapted from a great Colombian novel, this film surpasses its source material and becomes chilling, moving and compelling cinema, an example of what Colombian and Latinamerican cinema can be at its noblest form.

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