Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Argentine masterpiece at I-House, plus new New World Cinema book

'White Elephant,' set in the shantytowns of Buenos Aires, screens Friday, Sept. 12 , at International House. The new Directory of World Cinema: Argentina book calls it "film of the year."

Argentine masterpiece at I-House, plus new New World Cinema book

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Ricardo Darin (left) and Jérémie Renier walk the barrios of Buenos Aires in "White Elephant."
Ricardo Darin (left) and Jérémie Renier walk the barrios of Buenos Aires in "White Elephant."

Argentina’s White Elephant, starring its country’s beloved Ricardo Darin, and directed by Pablo Trapero, traces the relationship between a shantytown priest nearing the end of his career and a young Belgian clergyman (Jérémie Renier, from In Bruges), whose non-traditional methods put him in the midst of a raging drug war.

Deemed the “film of the year” by Beatriz  Urraca and Gary M. Kramer, editors of the new Directory of World Cinema : Argentina (Intellect Books) , the 2012 release gets its Philadelphia premiere Friday, Sept. 12, at International House. Both Urraca and Kramer will be on hand to introduce the film and lead a post-screening discussion.

In their essay at the begining of the extensive Director of World Cinema: Argentina book -- which also includes contributions from critics Matt Prigge and Carrie Rickey -- editors Urraca and Kramer compare White Elephant to Slumdog Millionaire and City of God for its unflinching look at the urban underclass, its sweeping realism and force.

For information on the White Elephant screening and other film programs at International House , go to: www.ihousephilly.org, or call 215-387-5125. International House, 3701 Chestnut Street.

Inquirer Movie Columnist and Critic
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Steven Rea Inquirer Movie Columnist and Critic
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