Sunday 2 January 2011

The Headless Woman [2008]

Directed by Argentine filmmaker Lucrecia Martel, The Headless Woman has earned rave reviews at the festival circuit. Touted as a psychological thriller, the film is about a seemingly happily married middle-aged woman, belonging to a wealthy family and who works as a dentist, hits something while driving on her way to her home. She suffers a slight injury to her head, and though she had actually hit a dog, she comes to believe she’d hit a human being. Though nothing much dramatic happens in this film, and, as one would expect, there aren’t any punch lines or twists in the tale either; the quiet tension that fills the air forms the very basis for the movie. Well, the film is largely uneventful, but it sure manages to keep one glued to the seemingly innocuous occurrences on the screen. The acting is naturalistic, and the lady in the role of Veronica, whose blasé attitude and inability to look beyond herself (which could be an effect of her head injury) often borders of the irritating but which is entirely believable, delivers an effective performance. The film also has a socio-political angle to it, but which remains largely as an allegory and never too evident. The film’s genre might suggest otherwise, but the moments of cinematic inactivity are what define this film, its theme and the characters.

p.s. My recent review of the film can be found here.

Director: Lucrecia Martel
Genre: Thriller/Psychological Thriller
Language: Spanish
Country: Argentina

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