Lili's Apron | Chicago Reader

Lili's Apron

Argentine director Mariano Galperin mines his country's economic crisis for gallows humor in this 2004 portrait of a middle-class couple's downward slide. Ramon (Luis Zembrowski) first loses his job as a chef, then has to contend with repo men and the meltdown of wife Lili (Paula Ituriza). With no place left to turn, he dons drag to work as live-in maid for a shallow American and his imperious Buenos Aires lover. Like a Mrs. Doubtfire streaked with social realism, the movie asks us to accept burly Ramon passing as a woman; only then can we appreciate the absurdity and resolution of his ensuing misadventures. The biggest problem, however, isn't with Zembrowski's character, but with Ituriza's—erratic and destructive, Lili sounds one shrill note after another, undercutting both the comedy and the love story. In Spanish with subtitles. 90 min.

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