What hurts the most about the memory of horror is not so much the possibility of reliving the terrible, but obviously also, as the simple certainty of oblivion.

How is it possible that it takes so little to forget so much?

One day in 1985, an Argentine prosecutor dared the unthinkable, the simply unheard of: try the military of a brutal (like all) dictatorship and do it properly, giving the defendants the guarantees that they did not give to their victims. .

Each session of that trial became a very painful coven to which the worst of what we are was summoned.

It was the most vivid representation of pain.

But with everything that really hurts, Santiago Miter maintains, is that it has been forgotten.

Basically, this is the raison d'être of

Argentina, 1985


And to the motivation of him it folds with an excessive rigor.

Perhaps exaggerated.

From the first second it is clear to him that his destiny is none other than to remember, to relieve the pain of what has been lost by reliving with an almost notarial will what it was

that -like it or not and as Faulkner would say-

is what we are


The past does not exist.

The past is another way of calling the present.

Let's say that it is its almost utilitarian nature as a tool for the common good that makes the film stand up and, most importantly, live.

Someone could say that it belongs to that diffuse and necessarily clumsy genre of necessary cinema and, if only for once and without precedent, there is no other choice but to agree with it.

Argentina, 1985

is basically a movie, we said, that hurts


It hurts what is heard from some of the 833 witnesses who recorded the misadventure of the more than 30,000 disappeared.

Annoyed by her elemental appeal to the monstrous.

It is even irritating because of the clarity with which it leaves shared oblivion in front of the viewer.

But, above all, it hurts from simple and pure pain.

A film that, above all, hurts with simple and pure pain

The script written by four hands between the director and the excessive filmmaker Mariano Llinás simply gets carried away.

Or that's the idea.

What happened is so colossal, so hurtful, so literal, that all effort of style is laminated by the acrimony of the obvious.

The tortured go up to the platform of the trial and tell their tortures.

The relatives of those who vanished remember the night in which the lives of theirs and their own were kidnapped.

The judge reads what he once read before the entire universe ("Never again," he concluded).

And the dead attend, though not necessarily silently.

Let's say that the only luxury that the film allows itself outside of its stubborn and dry script is the drift of some other memorable secondary

(the prosecutor's teenage son)

and the crackling of the dialogues against the current in the mouth of the always enormous Ricardo Darín.

The rest is the essential and the essential is everything that at the time, in 1985, was the rest.

There is no doubt that the film can be blamed for both its excess of melodramatic conventionalism and its redundant use of the 'Hollywood' judicial cliché.

Miter abandons (or leaves aside, better) a good part of the findings of his more political filmography, such as the use of silence in

The Student

or the depth of the moral dilemma in his remake of

La Patota

or the taste for labyrinths in

La Cordillera


Now what matters is frontality, clarity and, more importantly, the instability of memory.

And in this altar, perhaps a more elaborate, more particular, more Miter look is sacrificed.

Either way, the memory remains.

The pain remains.

The unjust forgetting of pain remains.

Forget what happened, clearly maintains

Argentina, 1985

, is to humiliate the victims again.

+Ricardo Darín reinvents prosecutor Strassera until he converts his modest humanity and his acid sense of humor into supervening heroism.-So much formal conservatism 'made in Hollywood' becomes rare, coming as the film of two of the most interesting and risky voices of the Iberoamerican cinema.

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