DIRECTOR: ALEJANDRO G. INARRITU STARRING: DANIEL GIMENEZ CACHO, GRISELDA SICILIANI, XIMENA LAMADRID RUNNING TIME: 2 HRS 54 MINUTES
Follows a renowned Mexican journalist and documentary filmmaker who returns home and works through an existential crisis as he grapples with his identity, familial relationships, the folly of his memories.
Bardo is the latest International Feature submission for Mexico. Best known for Babel, The Revenant and Birdman, Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu’s latest film is a dazzling, spectacularly beautiful looking film that’s deeply personal to him.
The film begins with Silverio, a journalist and now documentary filmmaker. His latest film called False Chronicle of a Handful of Truths has been received with a ton of praise. He’s been living in Los Angeles for the past 20 years with his wife Lucia, and their children Lorenzo and Camila. He’s about to become the first Latin American to receive a prestigious American award for his outstanding work in journalism.
He returns back to Mexico to reunite with his siblings and relatives where they celebrate his success in a breathtakingly beautiful party before returning back to Los Angeles to receive his award.
Bardo is a feast to watch. Every scene is gorgeously shot. Inarritu shoots virtually the entire film in extreme wide angle, allowing every little detail to be shown in every one of his fantastic locations. The cinematography, the score, the production designs, it’s all very impressive. Daniel Gimenez Cacho gives a wonderful performance as Silverio.
Bardo is a state of existence between life and death. Inarritu, like every immigrant, is torn between the guilt of leaving ones birthplace and the need to be accepted in ones new country. It’s a state of never really feeling like you belong somewhere. It’s like being stuck in purgatory. The film itself is a blend of dreams and memories, acknowledging that it’s difficult to separate the two, especially as one gets older. The film is a movie made by Inarritu, for Inarritu, making it difficult at times to connect with the story despite the movie's main message. Bardo, like the titles suggest, is maybe just a chronicle of uncertainties.