Film Screening 11th August, 2011

Poster for Biutiful


8:00 PM, 11th August, 2011

  • MA
  • 148 mins
  • 2010
  • Alejandro González Iñárritu
  • Alejandro González Iñárritu, Armando Bo, Nicolás Giacobone
  • Javier Bardem,  Maricel Álvarez, Hanaa Bouchaib

From Mexican director Alejandro González Iñárritu (Babel, 21 Grams) comes a heartbreaking look at crime, love, spirituality and redemption.

Acting in his native Spanish language, Bardem (No Country for Old Men) delivers a powerful performance as Uxbal, a father trapped in the dark Barcelona underworld. Diagnosed with terminal cancer, Uxbal must deal with his loving-but-bipolar wife (Álvarez), rescue illegal immigrants and protect his children from both his illness and their volatile mother. The narrative weaves between Uxbal's spiritual and physical journey, resulting in an intimate film about a man's very personal struggle.

Describing this film as intense is probably an understatement as it masterfully builds tension and takes us to the highs and lows of human emotion, a constant reminder of the fragility of our mortality. Enhanced by its stunning cinematography and poignant soundtrack, the whole film comes together magically and credit must go to Iñárritu for his artful direction, which saw the film in competition for the Palme d'Or at Cannes in 2010, in addition to a well-deserved nomination for Best Foreign Language Film at the Oscars.

Bardem, who ended up winning Best Actor at Cannes, shines in this film. His raw and very human portrayal highlights the depth of his acting ability and reminds us that his first Oscar win was no accident.

Biutiful is indeed a fitting name. Thought-provoking, painful yet inspiring, this is a film not to be missed. (I recommend tissues!)

Ruohan Zhao