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The Secret in Their Eyes - El Secreto de Sus Ojos

by

Jeff Nelson

The Secret in Their Eyes - El Secreto de Sus Ojos is near perfection and comes with a high recommendation.

The Secret in Their Eyes - El Secreto de Sus Ojos
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It isn't very often that moviegoers speak of films from Argentina. Whether the fact that they don't follow foreign films or despise reading subtitles, many American viewers avoid movies from other countries. One of the few times foreign films receive recognition is at the Academy Awards. The Secret in Their Eyes - El Secreto de Sus Ojos won the Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film of the Year, but continues to be unseen by many viewers.

A retired legal counselor writes a novel attempting to find closure for one of his past unresolved homicide cases and for his love with his superior as they continue to haunt him decades later. The plot itself isn't very original, but it isn't the story that makes this film so great. The screenplay is absolutely exceptional. The characters each have an incredible amount of depth allowing the audience to truly connect to each individual role, whether the character is likable or not. The film continues to switch between flashbacks and current time. The pacing is smooth as can be. Subtitles shouldn't stop any viewers from checking out a foreign film. The dialogue is phenomenal from start to finish. It manages to captivate the viewer from the moment it begins until the credits are rolling. The twists and turns are mixed. Some of the plot points are relatively predictable, but the ending is wonderfully well-crafted. There's an expansive amount of symbolism held within the finale. There are moments that some viewers may feel the film moves slowly, but I felt that the movie moves just as fast as it should. Those who enjoy an in-depth character study with an engrossing story will find themselves exuberant.

Most American audiences are sure to not recognize the cast presented. Despite my lack of knowledge regarding the cast, I sure appreciated the acting. Each actor pulled his or her weight to extreme measures. They give the story and dialogue that extra push needed to pass the finish line. The development that occurs within each character is further shown through the skills of the cast by performing as their characters in different decades. The raw emotion and passion given by each member of the cast is very good and easily deserved Oscar nominations.

Given the fact that The Secret in Their Eyes - El Secreto de Sus Ojos is a crime/drama, the camera work is critical. A unique approach was taken towards the film that surely works. All of the elements of the visuals are on the same wavelength as the camera work. The cinematography gives the correct atmosphere to the film that aids in the delivery of the message given. The crew did a superb job in making the characters appear older after the decades had passed. The sound mixing does what it should. There clearly aren't any intense action sequences, but dialogue was made the priority of the mix. It comes across loud and clear through the center channel. No shortcuts were taken in the visual department.

Once the film came to a finish, it took a minute to process what I had just watched. This is a film that isn't something you come across everyday in cinema. Everything from the screenplay and the acting to the visuals and the direction are top notch. I don't always agree with the decisions made by the Academy, but this was the clear winner. For those who refuse to watch this film due to the subtitles are missing out on something wonderful. It's a shame that there aren't many movies such as this. The Secret in Their Eyes - El Secreto de Sus Ojos is near perfection and comes with a high recommendation.

My Rating = Four and One Half Stars

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