Film of the week: El Vuelco del Cangrejo/Crab Trap

10/09/2010 at 9:00 am Leave a comment


El Vuelco del Cangrejo/Crab Trap (Columbia, 2009)
Starring Arnobio Salazar Rivas and Rodrigo Vélez
Directed by Oscar Ruiz Navia
What can only be called as a cinematographer’s wet dream, “Crab Trap” (described as a weaving of documentary and fiction) is certainly a feast for the eyes. Each shot is like a still life portrait that hangs in your favorite art museum. The light is caught just right. The subjects of the photographs emote for the camera. The viewer thinks, “I want to be there, in that picture.”
But “Crab Trap” isn’t a portrait hanging in the Met, it’s supposed to be a film, ‘moving pictures’ that tell a compelling story about characters you love or love to hate. Unfortunately Navia directs the cinematic equivalent of a really pretty girl with no smarts- so nice to look at but you’d rather she didn’t speak. The film claims to be about the everyday life of the jungle village in La Barra, Columbia, and that it is. But I was left wondering, “What about La Barra? What are you trying to tell me? What is the point of your story?” Not to mention the annoyance I had when every scene lasted about 15 seconds longer than it should have. Where’s a good film editor when you need one?
Judging by the discussions I overheard in the lobby of the theater after the show let out (“Where was the drama?” “Do you know what this was supposed to be about?”); I wasn’t the only one left in the dark with too many questions and no one to answer them.

Source: Raquel Penzo

Entry filed under: COLOMBIAN CINEMA, FILM OF THE WEEK. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , .

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