Sunday, May 09, 2010

The Secret In Their Eyes

I hadn't seen all the nominees for Best Foreign film last year, but my money was on "A Prophet". That opinion has changed now that I've seen "Secret". This Spanish language film definitely deserves it's Academy Award. This multilayered film will haunt you and yet, satisfy as well.

Ricardo Darin, well know in South America, stars as Benjamin Esposito, a retired criminal court officer who decides to reexamine a case that has haunted him for 25 years. Mr. Darin gives a very nuanced performance balancing his way through the layers of the story which starts out like a episode of "Law & Order" but becomes so much more. The simple investigation of the crime soon becomes more complex with unexpected twists and turns.

On the surface, it's a murder mystery but there is a heartbreaking love story in place as well. The rape and murder of a young women sets the story in motion. Be warned that the scene of the crime is not pretty but the brutality of the crime is important to fuel Esposito's obsession in the case. When he decided to revisit the case, much of the film is told in flashback and the growing relationship between Mr. Darin and Soledad Villamil, reveals an unspoken love that still smolders years later.

Besides the two leads, there is some fine work by Guillermo Francella, as Pablo Sandoval, Esposito's friend and co-worker as well as Pablo Rago as the widower of the victim. All the acting is superb and the story grows richer with every scene. "The Secret In Their Eyes" is an intelligent, absorbing film that should not be missed.

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