EVERYTHING ABOUT A MOVIE?
|GREEN WALL, THE (LA MURALLA VERDE) (director/writer: Armando Robles Godoy; screenwriters: from the novel by Omar Aramayo/Juan Cuadros; cinematographer: Mario Robles Godoy; editor: Atillo Rinatdi; music: Enrique Pinilla; cast: Julio Alemán (Mario), Sandra Riva (Delba), Raúl Martin (Romulo), Lorena Duval (Mother), Enrique Victoria (Father), Jorie Montoro (Chief of Jungle Region), Juan Bautista Font (Colonization Director); Runtime: 110; MPAA Rating: R; producer: Manuel Yori; Altura Films International; 1970-Peru-in Spanish with English subtitles)|
a little splash as a cult film."
Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz
Peruvian director Armando
Robles Godoy's ("Mirage") turns
out a minor cult film, with a
back-to-the-jungle survival theme. It might be the first Peruvian feature to reach the States (it's
only the fourth film ever made in Peru). The romantic film tells about a young Lima
salesman Mario (Julio
Alemán) who, with his
wife Delba (Sandra Riva) and baby
son Romulo (Raúl Martin), give up city life to start a farm in the
jungle. They must go through government bureaucrats to secure the land (the couple take advantage of a government
program to civilize the
forest) and then invest their
energy in breaking down 'the green wall' of the jungle. Mario clears the land and on the rich soil
grows coffee. He builds a comfortable bamboo home that has a veranda
overlooks a little stream. The imaginative lonely boy loves to play in
his natural backyard, where he builds a tiny city out of blocks, tin,
glass and string. His dad builds him a waterwheel that goes around and around
pleasantly tinkles against a glass jar. The self-sufficient
back-to-nature folks are more put-off by the settlement bureaucrats then they are by the jungle,
which is why the pic probably appeals to its mostly dreamy-eyed urban
viewers so much.
Writers Godoy and Juan
Cuadros base it on the novel
by Omar Aramayo. The Green Wall
is a raw film made by a greenhorn when it comes to filmmaking
technique. But because of its simplicity and sincerity, it struck a
chord with the festival crowds and made a little splash as a cult film.
The Peruvian jungle becomes the main attraction, as the drama-free
story unfolds as one where pastoral bliss is threatened by mankind's
progress (would you believe a biblical-like snake emerges from this
primitive exotic Garden to bite the young boy and threaten his life,
and dad must battle with the village bureaucrats to get the serum needed to save
his son's life!).
The result is a somewhat
charming humanistic pic filled with the usual nature cliches and lots
of lush visual photography. But its gimmicky visual shots and too many
confusing flashbacks seem awkward, and its story is on the dull side.
REVIEWED ON 1/19/2011 GRADE: B-
Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"
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