VIFF 2011 Reviews: Las Acacias; Empire North; Jean-Luc Persecuted.

Las Acacias. Argentina/Spain, 85 min.

A truck driver hauling logs from Paraguay to Buenos Aires gives a lift to a young woman and her four-month-old baby. Nothing happens, but by the end of the journey something has happened.
Empire North. Denmark, 58 min.

A Danish cartoonist (oops) designs a fake rifle that supposedly tags political dissidents with nano tracking devices. When he takes his phony weapon to an arms show, he gets serious offers from big powers. The Chinese are enthusiastic enough to offer to take over production. Unfortunately this good idea is buried in a mish-mash of irrelevant amateurish video.

Jean-Luc Persecuted. France, 45 min.

Set in the Pyrenees in the early Twentieth Century, the film tells, without dialogue, the story of Jean-Luc, a hulk of a man obsessed with the beautiful, fragile baby he has fathered. If only he bestowed the same affection on his neglected wife. The film is spoiled by a loud annoying score.

About aharmlessdrudge

Way back during the late Bronze age -- actually it was the 1950s -- all of us in high school had to take a vocational test to determine our interests and, supposedly, our future careers. I cannot remember the outcome, but I do recall one question that gave me pause. "If you were to win a Nobel prize, would it be in literature or in physics?" I hesitated over the question: although I enjoyed mathematics and science more than English class, I did have a couple of unfinished (and very bad) novels hidden away at home. I cannot remember what I chose back then, but the dilemma followed me to university, where I switched from mathematics to English and -- after a five-year stint in journalism -- back to mathematics. I recently retired as a professor of statistics. Retirement. What a good chance to revive my literary ambitions. I have finished a novel -- more about that in good time -- and a rubble of drafts of articles about mathematics and statistics is taking up space on my hard disk.
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