I love movies about women: errant women, funny, smart, angry womyn. Bring it. This week’s short comes from Argentina and though it was released in 2011, Salón Royale is still making the rounds at festivals and through the Internet blogosphere quite successfully.
The story: Julia drives Ana and Paula to a mutual friend’s wedding where they’re all hoping to find some action/tender satisfaction. When Paula lets it slip that Ana’s ex-boyfriend Lucas will be present, Ana’s nerves bubble up causing her friends to rally around her. At thirteen minutes, this slice-of-life story is funny, incisive and illustrates that when women talk shit about each other it’s really born out of their own fears and insecurities. What should we practice instead? #Gratitude, people.
What to look for: The film is shot in one location (inside the car) and consists of two scenes: the drive to the party and the drive home from the party. The simplicity of the circumstances allow for an efficient introduction to these three very different characters. The dialogue is fresh, natural and a stand out precisely because it is piercingly trivial. It is further amplified by the performances of established Argentine TV actresses Marina Bellati, Julieta Zylberberg and Luciana Lifschitz, who communicate with eye lines and lip twitches as much as they do with Porteño colloquialisms. The framing is wide and the coverage limited. The lighting has a nice night time glow that falls flatteringly on the talent. Varying color temperatures are skillfully contained and give the frame a diffused confetti look. Overall the short does a lot with very little and draws us in given its detailed portrayal of conversations we’ve either been witness to or participated in ourselves.
The eye behind the lens: The writer/director is one Sabrina Campos, who normally puts her thoughtful perspicacity to use in the art department of indie films and TV shows. When are you making another one, Sabrina?