|Index||9 reviews in total|
I do not know how to categorize this film. A thirty something immigrant from Spain is escaping her life there after a tragic accident has killed her daughter. Her mother asks her to return home, but she decides to remain in New York City. She works odd jobs, including one as a babysitter to two spoiled brats. A Russian friend informs her of a job paying $2,000 just to attend a private party and blend in while looking pretty in a black mini skirt. If it is too good to be true, and you know the rest. She shows up at the party and it does not go well. The last 15 minutes or so are quite disturbing. There is no way to describe it without spoiling the movie and so I won't. I will warn of some brief full nudity. The acting is good and it only runs eighty minutes. NY City provides a gritty background which works well for the movie.
There isn't really much to this film or at least there isn't for the
nearly the first 45 minutes. Its unfortunate because its after this
time the real story begins which is decidedly more interesting and
entertaining that what precedes it. Even so, its not enough to redeem
The first 45 minutes really details the difficulties our lead faces as an immigrant in NY. The story goes into some considerable and unnecessary detail with her situation and because there is little dialogue or interaction with her on this front we don't really get any emotional investment in her character. Mostly your left watching a series of boring on screen events. You observe the problems she faces due to a lack of finances while wondering when something significant is going to happen. There is also little or no musical accompaniment so you have only tedious screenplay to clue you in and absorb you into her situation.
The pace of the film is very slow throughout. Scenes are very elongated so you end up with very long periods where little happens, or it happens in the midst of a long sequence of trivial events that really add nothing to the proceedings. Most of the content in this film would have ended up (quite rightly) on the cutting room floor of any Hollywood production, but in truth there isn't a lot of material here to begin with. Realistically without the padding this film would really only be 20-30 minutes long.
There is little character or plot development and no real story progression. The underlying plot is a good one but hasn't had the development necessary to produce anything substantial. I think the main issue with this movie is the majority of it exists solely as a segue to the final section where the real story lies. Unfortunately this final section is thin, premature and lacking enough material to thicken out the story. What left is tale worthy of little more than a film short.
The lead is quite good and does well with the material. There are no major roles here so other than the lead most other parts are fairly trivial; but they're handled reasonably well considering as was the direction.
Its clearly a small production, probably without the resources larger films have to plug holes and address shortcomings, but I think the writing/producing is lacking. The story is mostly filler and that doesn't bode well for keeping you focused as you yawn and drift off in places.
If you have idle time, watch it but I would advise against putting time aside to see it, it's just not worth it.
If you want a fun or pleasant film, then please for the love of God do
NOT watch this film. Likewise, if you are severely phobic about
spiders, for the love of God do NOT watch this film. You can't say I
didn't warn you.
The film is about Luciana, an illegal alien from Spain who is living in New York City. Because she has no social security number or i.d., she is forced to work crappy jobs for cash under the table. But in the process, she makes herself frazzled and is miserable...and something needs to give. The chance to make A LOT of money presents itself when her 'friend', Olga, tells her about a party where she can make a couple thousand dollars in one night. How?! Well, Olga assures Luciana everything will be fine...just show up at the place and she'll be happy with the result. As for Olga's promise, well, she's a total liar...and what awaits Luciana is pretty much what you see in "13 Tzameti"....and it's really painful to watch. So my advice is if you don't mind seeing horrible human cruelty, giant spiders and copious nudity, it might be a good bet to see this one. As for me, I found it oppressive...well made but oppressive.
Most Beautiful Island was extremely well-received at Austin's SXSW Film
Festival where it won Grand Jury Award for Narrative Feature. This
eloquent film explores the experiences of Luciana, a recent
undocumented immigrant, who has recently arrived from her home land and
is just trying to get by in New York. The film focuses on a single day
as she takes various odd jobs and then gets invited to work at a
mysterious party where she will be extremely well-paid for a single
night's work. The suspense builds towards a truly shocking and deeply
disturbing climax. This film shows the truly dark side of the American
Dream and the truly disturbing nature of class privilege in a society
with huge gaps in class and, therefore, power and privilege.
The story is described as inspired by true events so there may be some exaggeration in the actual climax, but it is still quite powerful and leaves the audience awestruck. Ana Asensio directed, wrote and stars in this fascinating and absorbing film. It is beautiful written, filmed and acted. The tension builds towards the disturbing climax. The American Dream is not always what it seems to be and needs to be re-imagined for our current economic and political realities. I hope the film gets distributed so more people can learn to empathize with the immigrant experience which has sadly become a political punching bag in recent years.
Very slow buildup - should have been an episode of the Dark Mirror or a
horror anthology not a full movie as there is no character development
or any real story development.
The end though does hold some suspense and has an interesting denouement but its only an average movie to pass your time and it won't set your world alight.
Take a bow, Ana Asensio. The Writer-Director-Actor of 'Most Beautiful
Island', a film that's likely to surprise and shake you way more than
you could imagine. This dazzler is a strong film, that shuns "The Great
American Dream' with ferocity.
'Most Beautiful Island' Synopsis: An illegal immigrant (Ana Asensio) struggling to begin a new life in New York City is offered a great opportunity, but as day turns to night, she discovers she's been lured into a dangerous game.
'Most Beautiful Island' follows a woman's struggle in the big apple. She babysits children to survive, sells fried chicken dressed up as a chicken to lure NYC's ruthlessly busy crowd. However, things get worse when she volunteers to attend a 'party'. What happens at this 'party' is something to be witnessed and experienced. The only way I could describe the film's final act would be in one word: Spellbinding.
Asensio's Screenplay shows struggle & desperation with excellence. You feel for Luciana, the protagonist, as she hustles & bustles the madness of America's most ambitious city. Asensio's Writing depicts the ugliest side of "The Great American Dream". Asensio's Direction is powerful, too. She has handled this intense story, with command. Cinematography & Editing, merit a special mention.
Performance-Wise: Its Asensio all the way. The actress delivers a knockout performance from start to end. She takes to the part like a fish takes to water. Its a fully committed, fleshed out performance from an actress we had no clue was all set to surprise us. The rest of the cast lends remarkable support.
On the whole, 'Most Beautiful Island' is among the year's strongest films. Don't miss it.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
there were parts in the movie that made no sense not to mention the so called party. for example why having the bath scene where she was watching how the roaches kept coming out of the wall...save yourself an hour of life because the sick game that the woman got herself into was so hard to believe even though the movie was inspired by true events. however there was a similar sick game shown in one of the last episode of montalbano as well...it is still hard to believe that at that age a woman would got herself into such situation so willingly and naively and by all means not that desperate just looking for shortcuts in life without the hard work... while she must have had somewhat an idea the job had to be dangerous risky or at least very uncomfortable. 3 out of 10 points only because I actually watched the whole movie so it must have kept the attention. that is the only value and showing some sick entertainment choices of some circles of people that can even lead seemingly normal life during the day, which is really nothing new.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
It'll be tough to write five lines. It's all right there in the summary. I read reviews and thought I was in for a shocking horror- fest ending. Wrong, it was very dull. Admittedly, I wouldn't want to be in any of their shoes in the ending scenes but it was nothing special really, a real fizzle out ending. I'm not a fan of slasher/gore films and that's not the type of horror/thriller I was looking for and still this film simply stunk. There was nothing deep I could have missed. Whoever said in their review that it was full of mystery was very very misleading, there is no real mystery, maybe a little anticipation as you don't know exactly what is going to be required of the lead character to earn this big money but it's not much and not all that unique. The acting really wasn't bad, but they had junk to work with. Oh, and contrary to one of the other reviews here, there are NO "giant spiders" just two very small ones. Trust me, this movie sucked considering all the hype the reviews on here gave it. It's nothing special, shocking or eye opening, in fact, I was sorry I left mine open long enough to see it all.
This is a different type of movie all together. Not a normal thriller
movie of recent time. With lot of mystery it involves the misery of a
Spanish immigrant and her struggling life. She suffers to meet her
daily needs. She does anything to earn money.
This movie is associated with the dark side of rich people of Newyork city. Along this it also creates an interesting environment and lot of suspense about the torturing process of the rich people. All the way you are not sure what is going to happen next. What violence is going to grab her.
Ana Asensio deserve a lot of credit as she is the writer, director and the central role of the movie. First of all she has written an extraordinary script mixed with sorrow, pain,sufferings,horror and violence. Next she has directed the movie pretty well as the movie starts with the simple story of the immigrant girl but soon reaches it's pick when the original game of shadows started to flourish. And finally as an actress she has created perfect moves to draw the figure of the emotions and tears of the central role.
Some audience may find the movie a bit harsh as they may find it difficult to tolerate the cruelty of human mind arising from the darkest side of our mind. Some may find it a notorious movie as there are several near nude and seminude scenes in the film. But apart from all this it is an excellent movie of saddest aspect of the immigrant life with a lot of appeal and mystery as well as thrill in it.
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