Friday, July 16, 2010

Nada + (2002)

Juan Carlos Cremata's comic look at how the Cuban government affects its citizens, Nada + (Nothing More), is a film about a female postal worker. Thais Valdes plays the woman who dreams of living with her mother and father in Miami while dealing with her horrible boss (Daisy Granados). She livens up her existence by romantically responding to the correspondence she is supposed to deliver. Nothing More was screened during the Director's Fortnight at the Cannes Film Festival. ~ Perry Seibert, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 88 mins
Nada + (2002)

A cute little film that contains a lot of whispering of the letters she writes-supposedly in a romantic mood. Other than than the ridiculous romantic voice the rest is a funny film with a lot of slapstick comedy including one chase scene close to the end. The film is filmed in B&W with a little colorization for select items in the various scenes. Like her yellow pencil or a dress or a cartoon butterfly that flies around in the scenes. Along with the colorization the side characters are a motley crew of misfits of society including one of her supervisors that is cross eyed crazy lady and one that is a mad scientist and is protected by an overzealous subordinate, and of course her immediate supervisor that is filled with rage when she thinks that Carla is somehow stealing.

I was a little surprised at its portrayal of the run-down condition of Cuba. Maybe they think it is fine but even her job is just merely stamping the letters by hand one at a time at a desk. Clearly a job better suited for any simple machine to do. Carla is clearly bored with this meaningless job and ventures into people's lives to live vicariously through their writings. In the opening scene they show an outside phone that almost looked like it needed a crank to start it. Must have been 50 years old or older.

It is funny that she gets postcards from Miami and it is really fat women on the beach. I wonder if it was to portray Americans as fat slobs???

A nude scene in a bath tub which had little to do with the overall message of the film. Most of the bonus features were just text of the history of Cuba {Film in Context}, Director Biography, and a short photo gallery.

Jacket cover texts:
Carla, a postal worker in Havana, fulfills her romantic longings by opening letters and rewriting them into passionate prose before sending them out again to their intended recipients. After her co-worker Cesar catches her, Carla turns her amorous talents on him.

Beautifully filmed in black and white with accents of brilliant color, Cuba's 2003 Oscar entry combines visual humor, poetry, satire of Cuban bureaucracy and lighthearted love story.

Looks like I might have to check out more films with Thais Valdes. Rating: Rating: 4.5 (/5)

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