The Violin, Movie.
Original Title: el Violín
Duration: 98 mn
Director: Antonio Vargas
Actors: Don Angel Tavira, Dagoberto Gama, Fermin Martinez
The violin movie, storyline
In an unnamed Latin American country that closely resembles Mexico, the government fights a rural insurgency with torture, assault, rape, and murder. Soldiers descend on a town, cutting off the rebels from their cache of ammunition hidden in a field. A family of grandfather, son, and grandson are among the rebels in the hills. The grandfather, with his violin over his shoulder, tries to pass the checkpoint, ostensibly to tend his corn crop. The commanding officer lets him pass but insists on a daily music lesson. Can the old man ferry out the ammunition in his violin case under the soldiers’ nose? (Source: AmdB)
The violin movie, trailer
The violin, Critics
The opening scenes of El Violin are almost too much to bear. Villagers are tortured and raped by the military, while their neighbours sob, bound and gagged – unable to help, and aware that they’re next. But these disturbing scenes are a necessary evil that drive the narrative forward. When Don Plutarco goes to see the soldiers, we are only too aware of what they are capable of, and what is at risk. A man of few words but possessing a grizzled, steely nerve, Plutarco puts his life on the line in an attempt to help those he loves. The film refuses to give in to any kind of sentiment, however, presenting a stark tragedy that doesn’t need an extra dose of melodrama.
El Violin opens with a horrific scene set in a ramshackle hut, where an army sergeant tortures a peasant trussed to a chair. The camera is placed at ground level behind the victim. The rest of the film is a flashback that turns on the quiet old man travelling on a mule between a village occupied by the army and the guerrillas’ hideout in the mountains nearby. He manages to appease the military commander with his music while using his violin case to transport ammunition to the rebels. It’s carefully paced, shot in grainy black and white and, with no formal exposition, we’re left to form our own conclusions about this harsh image of social injustice. The film’s guardedly positive ending resides in the abiding decency and self-respect of the old man, who has passed to his grandson a song of pride, self-respect and resilience.
The New York times
Genaro ignites the drama, but Plutarco keeps it going through a series of delicately played and directed interludes involving the grandson, a landowner, a donkey and, finally and startlingly, an army officer with an apparent sentimental streak. Creased by the sun and bowed by the years, Mr. Tavira, an acting novice who was awarded a prize for this performance at the 2007 Cannes Film Festival, presents an unassailable moral figure. Mr. Vargas perhaps leans too heavily on the character’s earthiness, but in Plutarco you see centuries of oppression and resistance, as well as how some faces form a continuum with the land. This isn’t essentialism; rather, it’s a visible reminder of the struggle that dates back to the conquistadors and the Aztecs, of the history and the fight that endure.