Tuesday, 30 June 2020

Alternate Best Supporting Actor 2014: Ricardo Darin in Wild Tales

Ricardo Darin did not receive an Oscar nomination for portraying Simon Fischer in Wild Tales.

Wild Tales is an entertaining anthology film about revenge.

Ricardo Darin plays one of the leads of this anthology. His case for revenge is built upon his car being towed due to an unmarked no parking zone. This forces him to deal with a demon most of us know all too well...government bureaucracy. Darin fittingly actually plays his part in a very down to earth way even given the sort of tongue in cheek approach the film has overall. His performance though works in this regard as he really needs to do the simplest thing, which is to show the quite natural frustrations that come from the situation he is in. Darin is effective in this regard in creating the build within Fischer's slow degradation. This in starting with just the casual tones of trying to explain himself to the rather unfeeling workers. Darin naturally segueing towards overt frustration when they won't hear his case and just threaten more fees for him. Darin's performance being this properly slow dissolve in creating the right sense of exasperation in his expression and his shorter and shorter fuse as the situation continues. Darin creating that natural descent so many of us experience in dealing with the unstoppable, uncaring, force of bureaucracy until he eventually snaps. This leading though Fischer to lose both his job and for his wife to commit to divorce proceedings. Darin effectively sort of tips past that brimming point to show sort of the insanity brewing in his eyes as his situation only gets exacerbated at every second. Darin finding the darkly humorous qualities really by playing it straight, and just sort of showing the natural frustrations just going towards an extreme most wouldn't let it get to, we'd probably just pay the fine. Fischer does not though instead choosing to explode part of the towing garage, being a demolition expert by trade, without killing anyone, and leaving just a brief moment for Darin's performance. This as Fischer is hailed a hero by most for his acts against bureaucracy, to the point that even his family seems proud of him. I'll give Darin credit for his final moment in bringing just the right degree of smug satisfaction as though now Fischer has it all together through his act of domestic terrorism. This is a short performance, though one that gets the job done with nice degree of efficiency, and is enjoyable portrayal of a most unusual revenge seeker.


Mitchell Murray said...

Well, it seems I was dead wrong on my predictions here.

Also, in response to Calvin's comment on the last post, I think many of us would view Debecki as an action star waiting in the wings; She has the presence, charisma, dramatic skill - and of course, the stature - to really excel in those kinds of roles.

Bryan L. said...

Louis: Ratings and thoughts on the rest of the cast?

Also, your ranking and brief thoughts on each of the segments?

Michael McCarthy said...

I guess I was a little hard on this film when I said it “did nothing for me,” this segment and the very first segment were entertaining and the second one was actually quite intriguing. Darin would still rate about a 3.5 for me, my favorite of the cast was definitely Julieta Zylberberg though. I’d probably give her a 4.

Calvin Law said...

He was strong but I agree, probably a 4. Honestly I thought most of the segments were really good and could’ve watched a whole film centred on each. Agreed that Zylberberg was very good.

Supporting’s actually turning out to be much better for you than I’d imagine initially.

Bryan L. said...

Actually, to anyone who's seen the film, how would y'all rank the segments? I'd go:

1. Little Bomb
2. The Rats
3. Pasternak
4. The Proposal (Interchangeable with #3)
5. The Strongest
6. Till Death Do Us Part

For the titles, I used the English translations on Wikipedia btw.

Michael McCarthy said...

Uhhh I suppose...

1. Las ratas
2. Bombita
3. Pasternak
4. Hasta que la muerte nos separe
5. La propuesta
6. El mas fuerte

Anonymous said...

Louis and you guys: The five best actors, past or present, at changing their accents and/or voices? And the five with the best vocal range?

Lucas Saavedra said...

1. La propuesta
2. Bombita
3. Pasternak
4. Las ratas
5. Hasta que la muerte nos separe
6. El mas fuerte

Louis: Thoughts on the film's direction and screenplay?

Luke Higham said...

Calvin: Your rating and short thoughts on Rudolf Hrusinsky in The Cremator.

Louis Morgan said...


Zylberberg - 4(Her performance is good in capturing sort of the state of contemplation and anger initially. She then though is fantastic in naturally seguing this towards then concern and anxiety over the situation. Her performance beautifully realizes the whole situation in an instant microcosm, while also probably creating the most sympathetic character within all the segments by making the conflict so honest in her reactions.)

Sbaraglia - 3(This one is much more about the "action" than the performances, but I will say his reactions though are effective in the moments of fear, anger and random petulance.)

Martinez - 3.5(Effectively branches out in a whole bunch of different moments though in portraying an underlying general concern for his son but also direct anger at his mistake that flares up randomly. This though in his moments of contemplating the price of the agreement and is very funny in crafting this frustration.)

Nunez - 3.5(Does a good bit of smooth sleaziness. I especially love his little reactions of sort of sniffing out the price and the shameless way he portrays the man playing his hand to get the most out of the situation for himself.)

de Silva - 3.5(Very funny in just being seemingly a sad sack going along with a ridiculous plan though brings a nice bit of glint of greed in his eyes as well.)

Rivas - 4(Her performance I found quite terrific in terms of hitting one extreme after another. This from martial bliss initially, then to extreme depression from learning of the betrayal, to vicious vengeful intensity, to just general bitterness, but really the highlight of her work is that ending. This in she makes it work in sort of almost the shock wearing off as this oddly natural, if ridiculous, way of the husband and wife achieving a moment of clarity.)

Gentile - 3(Very much secondary in the segment however his reactions of horror are quite good, and I find hits the final moment with Rivas quite effectively.)

1. La Propuesta - (Although I probably would've preferred if the crime was a bit less horrible, I just loved where this segment went, with the great comedy as everyone starts getting in on dealing with the blame by trying to make more and more money. I especially enjoyed how it just kept going in terms of how it unraveled, particularly in terms of turning a few expectations on their heads.)

2. Pasternak - (A great sort of 1 page horror short story, just in the way it escalates so quickly and effectively.)

3. Hasta que la muerte nos separe - (This is the most complex of the segments and for me I loved how it basically just unraveled in creating the wedding from hell, though what I loved most was the ending of it where it successfully turned itself upside down again.)

4. Las Ratas - (Great atmosphere of the setting, and works so well in terms of the rapid nature of the pacing of the sequence. This just as things get out of control so fast, but hits those marks so effectively as this insane situation.)

5. Bombita - (Well covered this basically in the review, but enjoyable in sort of making a most unique bureaucratic nightmare)

6. El Mas Fuerte - (I actually do like all the segments, however this is the only one where I think the tone could've been altered a touch, as it gets a little repetitive at a certain point even in its short running time. Still I do think the ending is great in a very Tales from The Crypt sort of fashion.)

Louis Morgan said...



Daniel Day-Lewis
Meryl Streep
Gary Oldman
Alec Guinness
Peter Sellers


The direction by Szifron is very specifically minded, in fact he kind of directs each segment the same way, though I think it works in each. In that he begins with a very mundane approach to looking at what's going on, even dramatic, then just has the situation unravel this slowly into absurdity. Although he puts some nice little touches here and there visually, he largely leaves it to sort of showing the emotions within the performances to show how everyone goes "wild" within the tales. Each though he finds the right sort of quiet comic energy that he slowly builds within each really, while never fully breaking towards absurd, his touches of it amplify it in the right way.

His screenplay actually goes through a similar thing in he structures each as thus mundane event, seemingly, (road rage, parking ticket, plane ride, diner) and just unravels it towards insanity. What's remarkable is he finds unique sort of turns towards where the insanity goes though all come from some sort of human flaw, or overreaction. Really just it is a clever concept that is well executed.

Emi Grant said...

I'm Thinking Of Ending Things finally got a new release date. Hoping for the best.

Houndtang said...

You should review him in The Secret in Their Eyes - great film, great performance

Mitchell Murray said...

So on another random note, I just watched the 1962 "Cape Fear" for the first time. Although I wouldn't call it a flawless film, it's most certainly a more visceral and effective piece compared to Scorsese's remake (And that goes double for Mitchum's performance compared to de Niro's).

Anonymous said...

Luke, in terms of anticipation, could you rank the 2000s years from most to least looking forward to.


Okay. My first winners in the middle of 2020 are ...

PICTURE: An Officer and a Spy
DIRECTOR: Roman Polanski - An Officer and a Spy
ACTOR: Jean Dujardin - An Officer and a Spy
ACTRESS: Sidney Flanigan - Never Rarely Sometimes Always
SUPPORTING ACTOR: Nicholas Hoult - True History Of The Kelly Gang
SUPPORTING ACTRESS: Emmanuelle Seigner - An Officer and a Spy
ENSEMBLE: Da 5 Bloods
PRODUCTION DESIGN: An Officer and a Spy
SOUND MIXING: The Invisible Man
SCORE: A Whisker Away
EDITING: Da 5 Bloods
VISUAL EFFECTS: The Invisible Man
COSTUME DESIGN: An Officer and a Spy
MAKEUP & HAIRSTYLING: True History Of The Kelly Gang
ADAPTED SCREENPLAY: An Officer and a Spy

And which are yours?

Luke Higham said...

1. 2002/4/7/9 (Looking forward to those 4 in equal measure)
5. 2006
6. 2000

Honestly, the 2000s are my favourite decade to revisit so I'm looking forward to them all in general.

Anonymous said...

Louis, have you seen the argentinian film Nine Queens from 2000? It also stars Darín.