Saturday, 2 November 2019

Silvia Prieto [1999]

Argentine filmmaker Martín Rejtman’s whimsical, deadpan and droll comedy-drama Silvia Prieto wryly captured mundane snippets from the lives of a few aimless, disaffected people – drifters, so to speak – floating through their purposeless lives in contemporary Buenos Aires. Suffice it to say, the characters just keep gently migrating from one state of stasis to another. The titular Silvia (Rosario Bléfari) is a slender, naïve, soft-spoken, impulsive, neurotic and quietly alluring young loner living in a tiny apartment with a parakeet. She has just the hint of OCD – she keeps a precise track of the lattes and espressos she’s served as a waitress, she mysteriously disappears with a man’s Armani coat while on a solo holiday, she often roams around in her jumper suit, and she’s obsessed with cooking chicken. The few people she interacts with aren’t any different either – her placid ex-husband who keeps hanging out with her, his new girlfriend who peddles shampoo on the streets, and her stony broke ex-husband who loves his deodorants. Ironically, she dramatically announces at the outset that she decided to change her life the day she turned 27; but, apart from a few readjustments, she doesn’t really change much. Meanwhile she becomes fixated with the fact that there’s another person with her name in the city, who, in turn, becomes obsessed with starting a running get-together for all the Silvia Pietro’s out there. The dryly humorous banality of her confused existence and of those around her made this a fluid and curiously interesting film devoid of pretenses. The end credits, where a number of the other Silvia Prietos share fragments from their equally unspectacular lives, added to the running idiosyncratic streak.

Director: Martin Rejtman
Genre: Comedy/Existential Comedy
Language: Spanish
Country: Argentina

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