A few instances on this quick and infrequently exhilarating function from Colombia, its director, Camilo Restrepo, contrives placing visible juxtapositions. His digicam closes in on a lifeless man’s white shirt, soaked in blood, and focuses on the bullet gap in each the shirt and the person’s chest. It then cuts to a vibrant crimson motorbike gasoline tank and a gasoline nozzle going into it. The darkish round hood of a ceiling safety digicam is changed by the sight of a grey balloon increasing whereas being stuffed with helium.
What these connections add as much as is … enigmatic. Shot on 16-millimeter movie inventory that appears as wealthy in specks and cracks as it’s in shade, “Los Conductos” takes a great distance round in telling its story, considered one of loneliness, defiance and intractable craving. Luis Felipe Lozano, an itinerant laborer and nonactor whom Restrepo met in 2013, performs Pinky, a personality whose life relies on Lozano’s personal. Circuitously, Pinky speaks in voice-over about falling in with a bunch of individuals “united by a way of loss we felt on the earth.” However for nearly half of the film, we see him alone. He gazes at Medellín from excessive floor; he steals a motorbike; he wields a gun.
It is just late within the film that we piece collectively his involvement with a cult, and his subsequent want to hunt revenge towards its chief, known as Father. Father appears, on nearer scrutiny, to be nothing greater than a ringleader of thieves; in a single shot, he holds a messy ball of copper wire, clearly ripped out of stolen electronics.
Like “Days of the Whale” (2020), Restrepo’s film exhibits us a Medellín that’s removed from action-movie drug cartel clichés. Out of Pinky’s marginalized life, Restrepo conjures a lush however however desolate cinematic ambiance.
Not rated. In Spanish, with subtitles. Operating time: 1 hour 10 minutes. In theaters.