Batalla en el cielo

Posted by: | February 10, 2009 | Comments Off on Batalla en el cielo

As I watched this film I thought to myself: this can be a good short film, but it is being elongated so much it misses the point. There are a lot of scenes that are extended for no apparent reason, like after Ana and Marcos have sex, there is a tracking shot that shows the city, and then we go back to both of them and they are just laying there. Then we see Marcos reflecting after Ana tells him that he should turn himself to the police for a very long time. I think these two shots juxtapose interestingly because while in one you see the city and the monotony of it all, then you see Marcos reflecting in the same way. His life is this monotone repetitive actions that he finds thrills in kidnapping babies and that is probably why he wants to be with Ana so bad. I think Marcos represents the Mexico city, a repetition of actions that try to escape and eventually die. He lives for a dream. Everything he does after Ana comes is to be with her. He kills her because he knows he can’t turn himself in, so he would rather see herself dead and die afterwards than to die alone. His selfishness is extreme, but the director tries to justify it by saying that Marcos is actually in love with her. Does that justify his actions? I personally don’t think so. If Marcos is a symbol for Mexico city, then that means Mexico city is living for a dream that can’t occur in real life. An idealized world that cannot really occur. That is why I liked about the film.
Now what I didn’t like. I liked the shots of Marcos reflecting or the POV shots of Marcos looking into the sunset, but some shots were unnecessary. The raising of the flag could have been cut down a lot and many shots were very slow. Although this movie works in the same way as elephant, the slowless represents the monotone events in life, elephant at least had characters that were interesting. Until Marcos killed Ana I thought he was boring and uninteresting. Then the murder gave some complexity to the character, but still, Ana was always more interesting than him. In scenes where only Marcos was shown I always pondered about her. A general’s daughter that’s a prostitute. I wished I had known her more. I know this movie from Marcos’ POV, but maybe a shift in perspective could have been very interesting. I also thought the character of Marcos’ wife was one-dimensional and uninteresting. I was more interested in knowing the policeman more than her when Marcos is in the church. One final thought about the all the explicit sex scenes… they’re shocking, but its because we are not used to it. I thought they were realistic and un-hollywood like. They were still shocking because full frontal nudity is not common, and I don’t think it was completely necessary, but it still created a movie that you can remember, even if its for that reason. In general I thought the movie was slow. I know it had a purpose, but that movie could have been done in 30 minutes and it would have been a great short.


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