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La Flor (Part 1)


LA FLOR (The Flower, Mariano Llinás, Argentina 2018) is an outstanding contemporary film project: a director and his four actresses play around with cinema, with their playful urges knowing no bounds. They create fantastical spaces and couldn’t care less about sense, logic, and dramatic structure, even forgetting time in the process. Film history is their adventure playground, where they spent over ten years completing a nearly 14-hour work. Yet one can hardly speak of a closed story. LA FLOR is an open work in the very best sense, continually sprouting new images and blossoming afresh, a wander through genre cinema, divided into three chapters, six episodes, and eight acts. Mariano Llinás from the El Pampero Cine film collective and the acting troop Piel de Lava invite the audience to follow their intertwining narratives, which sometimes cross, but equally digress or simply peter out completely.

LA FLOR – CHAPTER 1, ACT 1 The director reveals his program, which is anything but programmatic. And a B-movie with horror elements runs its excessive course in a desert landscape. The music rushes from highpoint to highpoint, while the actresses in white lab coats are in search of the plot. A mummy with a red blindfold delivered to a laboratory unasked is a welcome McGuffin. The more that happens, the bigger the mystery becomes, which doesn’t necessarily want to be solved. An abrupt shift in genre and location follows and a musical with mysterious undertones begins: a couple no longer together are supposed to record one last joint song. The result is a celebration of pathos that reveals the deep truths of popular music. Whenever everything becomes too sudsy, the camera sticks to the heels of the duo’s assistant. She seemingly belongs to a Mafia association active worldwide that has some extravagant interests.

A pop star’s new lover looks for his long-term girlfriend, hoping to follow in her footsteps not just in bed, but on stage too. The camera studies faces in close-up for the time it takes for several cigarettes to be smoked, faces that wrestle for composure and register inner turmoil at the same time. The last joint studio session of the former couple also plays out in real time. Feelings become expressive gestures, despairing looks, and every note hits the nail on the head.
(Arsenal Kino)


Original title: La flor (Block I)
RA 2018, 214 min
Genre: Essay Film, Horror, Musical
Director: Mariano Llinas
Author: Mariano Llinas
Distributor: GRANDFILM
Cast: Pilar Gamboa, Elisa Carricajo, Laura Paredes
Release: 25.07.2019




  • OV Original version
  • OmU Original with German subtitles
  • OmeU Original with English subtitles

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