Rotterdam 2015 – Tiger Award winner
Buenos Aires, Jerusalem, Sarajevo
Original title: La obra del siglo
Directed by: Carlos Quintela
Written by: Abel Arcos, Carlos Quintela
Cast: Mario Balmaseda, Leonardo Gascón, Mario Guerra
Production country: Argentina, Cuba, Geramany, Switzerland
Runtime: 100 min.
Leo, a 30-year-old man returns back home after splitting up with his girlfriend to his father’s apartment near the nuclear city in the province of Cienfuegos, where his grandfather also lives. Otto, the grandfather, is the grumpy patriarch of the family, always fighting with the other two men about anything that could possibly come up. Rafael, Leo’s father, is a 50-year-old engineer who used to work at the nuclear reactor. With the fall of the Berlin Wall and the end of the Cold War, the construction of the Caribbean’s first nuclear power plant came to a complete halt. Rafael constantly feels his life has been a failure as he watches the Cuban Olympic team on TV parading in London wishing things could have been different had the nuclear reactor been constructed.
Carlos Quintela’s distinctive tale of a Cuban family sharing disappointments, versus the endless possibilities that could have been, unmistakably demonstrates the frustrations and hardships people from different generations face while living in emotional and financial isolation. (Andres Castillo)