Global Visions Film Series: Biutiful


Jon Hamlin

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Global Visions Film Series: Biutiful

Alejandro González Iñárritu’s latest addition to international cinema, Biutiful, is at once a striking and unforgiving film that explores the darker themes of a hard life. Javier Bardem’s portrayal of Uxbal, a determined-to-love father of two, is at once the centerpiece of this raw and emotional drama.

Uxbal’s entire reason for being is to bestow the love on his children that his father never bestowed on him. In this way, failure becomes one of the themes of the film. Uxbal is afraid to fail his daughters… afraid that he may not love them as much as he should.

This film is set in an imperfect world where terrible things happen to undeserving people. This can make scenes difficult to watch, but the film sheds light on the difficulty for Uxbal of trying to maintain a healthy life for he and his children in underground Barcelona.

But, more than anything, this is a story about a father’s love for his children. The emotional lynch pin of the story and the brilliance of Alejandro González Iñárritu and Nicolás Giacobone and their screenplay is that, in making decision for the good of his children—to show his love for them—Uxbal invariably ends up having to hurt someone else.

The film contains an unsettled atmosphere throughout the entire movie, as the main character, Uxbal, is dragged from one devastating realization to the next. There is no respite for audiences here and those looking for the happy ending may want to look elsewhere.

Yet, despite the films gritty and unforgiving subject material and pace, audiences will experience a gradual easing of tension and sense of redemption they need by the end of the film.

Jon Hamlin

Managing/Opinion Editor, Dakota Student

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