Biography/Drama – 2016 – Chile – 107 Minutes – The Orchard – In Spanish & French with English Subtitles – Rated R
Beloved poet Pablo Neruda (Luis Gnecco) is also the most famous communist in post-WWII Chile. When the political tides shift, he is forced underground, with a perseverant police inspector (Gael García Bernal) hot on his trail. Meanwhile, in Europe, the legend of the poet hounded by the policeman grows, and artists led by Pablo Picasso clamor for Neruda’s freedom. Neruda, however, sees the struggle with his police inspector nemesis as an opportunity to reinvent himself. He cunningly plays with the inspector, leaving clues designed to make their game of cat-and-mouse ever more perilous. In this story of a persecuted poet and his obsessive adversary, Neruda recognizes his own heroic possibilities: a chance to become a symbol for liberty, as well as a literary legend.
Directed by Pablo Larraín
Starring Gael García Bernal, Luis Gnecco, Alfredo Castro
Surprises always come at the end of Pablo Larraín’s films, when everything suddenly comes together and the audience sits in the cinema feeling both illuminated and floored. Neruda is no different, representing the director at his stunning best with a work of such cleverness and beauty, alongside such power, that it’s hard to know how to parcel out praise. – Variety
Neruda is a warmhearted film about a hot-blooded man that is nonetheless troubled by a subtle, perceptible chill. – The New York Times
Referents and identities are always slightly unfixed in Neruda, a film that reaches dizzying, exhilarating velocity by flouting the conventions of its hidebound genre. – Village Voice