Vera | Chicago Reader

Vera

With a minimum of dialogue, Francisco Athie's 2002 experimental narrative feature follows the spiritual journey of an elderly Mexican miner who's fatally injured in a cave-in, then visited by an androgynous, extraterrestriallike Mayan fairy who helps him prepare for death. I loved the beauty and simplicity of this film's special effects as well as its sound and music, but its underlying meaning, which seems less fresh, didn't hold me as much. Certain scenes involving occult rituals reminded me of Tarkovsky and Paradjanov; other sequences suggested an Eraserhead with fewer laughs. But on the whole it's a triumph of style over content. In Maya with subtitles. 86 min.

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