sábado, enero 22, 2011

Some Reasons for Seeing Paraíso Travel

Year: 2008.
Director: Simon Brand.
Based on the homonimous novel by Jorge Franco.

If you are new to Colombian cinema, the first thing you need to know about Paraíso Travel is that the movie is not by any chance the best production of Colombian Cinema. Critics usually prefer "Los Viajes del Viento" (The Wind Journeys) a very musical yet cinematographically silent look into colombian Folklore.

Paraíso Travel, however, is a good representative of colombian cinema.  It is worth seeing because it depicts a very actual problematic in Latin America: the illegal migration to the USA.
From that perspective, the movie is a very human portrait of the hardships that illegal inmigrants face all the way from south america through Guatemala and Mexico, in order to achieve their ideal of the american dream. Moreover,  the movie questions that ideal: It gives us hints on how dreamy is the america that illegal inmigrants get to experience.

In fact, through the eyes of Reina and Marlon (the main characters) you will see the New York that  is not found in the post-cards. There are no central park picnics or museum days for this young couple.
Its portrait of the -other- America, the -other- New York, is in itself a good reason to see Paraíso Travel.

If you are not convinced yet, you may as well take Paraíso Travel as a very sexy exploration of the latin woman.  Reina's ways epitomize the ways in which latin women use their sexuality as a very powerful weapon.  You will witness the hypnotic effect that Reina exercises over Marlon through the sensual power of her femineity  and through a very manipulative combination of demonstrations of affection and subtle rejection.
That exploration of the latin woman, however, does not end with a look at their sensuality. There is no weak woman in Paraíso Travel. Jorge Franco (the writer, acclaimed by the great Gabriel García Marquez) manages to tell us a story about the strength of latin women and also about their incredible ability for tenderness. If Reina embodies the sexual manipulation, Patricia, the woman who takes care of the main character when he needs it the most, is the incarnation of the strong, tender, supportive and caring spirit of latin american women.

A careful look at Paraíso Travel is a discovery of a good narration through cinema. Simon Brand is part of a new generation of Colombian film-makers that wants to step away from that never-ending tendency in colombian (latin-american) films consisting on worrying only about the narration, without paying the necessary attention to the esthetics and language of cinematographic expressions.

His movie is a good attempt to question the idea of paradise. It is a movie about finding a paradise within.

Please see the official trailer in english here: http://www.imdb.com/video/screenplay/vi1547698713/

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