Dancer Upstairs, The - (DVD)

Starring Javier Bardem et al

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R 39

eB390

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    For a man clinging to the hope of an impossible love in an impossible world, Agustin Rejas (JAVIER BARDEM) would soon learn the bittersweet truth of self-fulfilling prophecy. For 12 years, the lawyer turned police detective, a decent yet dispirited man seeking to practice the law as it was intended, tracked a delusional anarchist who fancied himself the Fourth Flame of Communism behind Mao, Lenin and Marx. He called himself Ezequiel after the 6th Century Biblical prophet who preached doom for nations that did not adhere to God's law. From his obscure bloody pulpit in a volatile Latin American country, this Ezequiel (ABEL FOLK) excited the downtrodden, impoverished masses to execute his maniacal demands in the most brutal of ways, proving one man's revolution is another man's terrorism. The government's fascist regime would impose martial law and justice delivered by both sides would become equally ferocious and unjustifiable.
    Categories
    DramaThrillerMovies
    Rating
    16V
    Number of Discs
    1
    Format
    DVD
    TV System
    PAL
    Country
    South Africa
    Region
    1. 2
    Barcode
    6003805030191
    Directors
    1. John Malkovich
    Title
    Dancer Upstairs, The - (DVD)
    Actors
    1. Javier Bardem
    2. Juan Diego Botto
    3. Laura Morante
    Year
    2002
    Running Time
    130
    Studio
    Fox

    Steve, . 5 December 2003

    THE DANCER UPSTAIRS
    A film review by Steve Rhodes
    Copyright 2003 Steve Rhodes
    RATING (0 TO ****): **
    In THE DANCER UPSTAIRS, director John Malkovich does a slow-motion Costa-Gavras (Z). An intriguing political drama that gets murkier by the minute, it is set in the capital of an unnamed South American country.

    The low energy production stars Oscar nominee Javier Bardem (BEFORE NIGHT FALLS) as Captain Rejas, a police detective on the trail of a mysterious revolutionary known only as Ezequiel. Ezequiel sees himself as the fourth Communist prophet after Marx, Lenin and Mao.

    When Ezequiel's terrorist followers aren't slaughtering government and military officials, they busy themselves with signage. All over town, they hang dead dogs with signs attached. Along with a "Long Live President Ezequiel!" the signs include a mish-mash of bizarre political slogans: "When I hear the word 'culture,' I reach for my pistol," and "Guns make us powerful. Butter will only make us fat."

    Since Captain Rejas and his team are having no luck in tracking down the terrorists, the country's president declares martial law. The longer the movie goes on, the slower it gets, and the more it is obvious that its sympathies lie with the terrorists, subtlety painting them as idealistic warriors against the oppressive government.

    The best part of the movie is the haunting music by Alberto Iglesias and Pedro Malgheas. Individual orchestral instruments wail at each other soulfully.

    With better pacing and more cutting, THE DANCER UPSTAIRS could have been more than just sporadically fascinating. But, as released, watching it will wear you out like eye fatigue from dirty eyeglasses.

    THE DANCER UPSTAIRS runs way too long at 2:09. It is rated R "for strong violence, and for language" and would be acceptable for most teenagers.

    Region details

    DVD Region 2

    Region 2 - Europe (except Russia, Ukraine, and Belarus), Middle East, Egypt, Japan, South Africa, Swaziland, Lesotho, Greenland, French Overseas departments and territories.

    R 39

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