The Secret In Their Eyes - Mirrors Of The Soul

                            English writer, Aldous Huxley once said that 'Every person's memory is his or her private literature.' That is why it is important for us to carry a treasured memory of a loved one and to let it nourish and sustain us in hard times. Romantic obsession at its two extremes is explored with sympathy and intelligence in the thriller The Secret in Their Eyes, the Oscar winning Argentinean film. 

                          Many say, 'language is not a barrier for  perfect act', and it is true with this movie, since it stirs up the your emotions. And performances are so brilliant, that there is no need for subtitles sometime, you could just read their eyes and know what they are trying to say!

     Benjamin Esposito (Ricardo Darin) is a recently retired criminal court investigator. Divorced and depressed, he decides to write a novel based on a 25-year-old cold case called “the Morales case,” which never ceased to haunt him. The flashback returns us 25 years to the source of that emptiness. Irene, a aristocrat educated at Cornell’s law school, has just arrived at the office. As their eyes meet, Esposito feels an instant attraction to her, and she to him, but he’s intimidated by their difference in social status. 

                   Enter the murder mystery, which centers on the rape and killing of a young woman, a new bride with a devoted husband. The corrupt local police tortured two construction workers into falsely confessing to the crime. This injustice pushes Esposito and Sandoval (Guillermo Francella), his alcoholic partner, to do some intensive detective work on their own. The husband and Esposito becomes convinced that the real killer is Isidoro Gomez (Javier Godino), a drifter from the girl's rural hometown. But they lack the evidence to convict Gomez, who's such a skilled sociopath that he's eventually recruited by the Buenos Aires police to carry out their extrajudicial dirty work. 

                 It’s a tribute to the story’s construction that the mystery only deepens, the more Benjamin digs, and there are many more surprises in this thematically substantive drama.

        Ricardo Darín is one of the best actors you probably haven't heard of. He creates an powerful character in both the time-lines. Through his eyes we are forced to think about what would we do in the same situation. Director Jose Campanella pulls us into the story with vivid, sensual details. He also shows us the intellectual and emotional excitement of cracking a case. The screenplay by Campanella is based on a novel by Eduardo Sacheri.

                            In one of the breathtaking scenes, the director sends his cameras hurtling after their suspect, as he burrows deep into the bowels of the stadium — catching up with him, losing him, leaping over banisters with him, even chasing him onto the field, where thousands of screaming fans boo as he interferes with a goal. It's a pretty visceral chase sequence. The lyrical editing almost feels like Esposito (Darin) is getting the chance to go back in time and right a terrible wrong. 

                          And while the film is with weighty themes, it takes the time to create characters, who are full of personality and attitude. So that, their internal quests are more vivid and involving. The film touches on Argentinean history, Argentinean love for soccer, Argentinean racism and the ugly under-currents of fascism that remain in a country which has had its share of dictators and citizens who have simply disappeared. It also presents the powerful people, who don’t want old cases dug up.

                         Secret in Their Eyes convincingly explores the power of memory to shape and influence our present and future moments. The story also depicts the sadness of a couple who cannot bring themselves through fear or disappointment to declare the love they have for each other. Everyone has a passion, that makes them live their life to the full to the end. Passion is what keeps each of us going on. But, how do some people live empty life's?  And so finally, the film shows us that although many choices result in an empty life, it is never too late to break that cycle and take a leap from the dark. 

                         It's rare for a film to be thought-provoking and outlandishly entertaining at the same time. The Secret In Their Eyes is indeed, a rare cinema.


The Secret In Their Eyes - Imdb 


Arnie said...

I was waiting to see this after it was declared the best foreign film, waiting for the DVDs to arrive

vinay said...

Thank you for the review.
Didn't give it thought until now but now after reading your post its surely on my list in a couple of days. :):)

Arun Kumar said...

@Arnab, Thank You, and do watch the movie.

@Vinay, Thanks for your comment. I watched it because it won the Oscar, and liked the movie.

CYNOSURE said...

Downloading started... :P
thanks for sharing... :)

Arun Kumar said...

@Cynosure, Thanks for your comment.

Unknown said...

Arun, this is one of my favorite films. It says so much in such a short time and packs so much emotion. Thanks for posting such an interesting review!

The Inner Side of "ME" said...

One of the best foreign language films I have seen