Aire Libre

Aire Libre is a raw honest depiction of a marriage between a middle class Argentine couple, Lucia and Manuel, trying to build a life together with their young son, which slowly disintegrates under the mundane banality of everyday life. The conflicts slowly build up without acknowledgement until tempers flare, eventually culminating in an explosive confrontation.

The film is a scathing critique on marriage and asks tough questions about the viability of staying in a long term relationship with one person and the possibility of happiness within a monogamous partnership.

The attractive actors give exceptionally intimate performances that look spontaneous and make us feel like intruders in a couple’s most private moments. The sexual moments are not sensual but are meant to show the emotional distance growing between them.

This couple has big plans to renovate a newly purchased house that will become their dream home, but the dream slowly dissolves as the dysfunction between them grows and the house falls apart like their marriage. They literally grow apart from each other and seem unable to come to any common ground, as much as we want to see them achieve their dreams.

Director Anahí Berneri uses the camera to give the effect of an intimate fly-on-the-wall style documentary that helps give the film a personal quality. 

There are no easy answers to marriage’s many problems but the film can be seen as a cautionary tale depicting many of the little annoyances in every relationship, and how they are brought to bear and gradually build to a point, if not acknowledged, that it comes to a destructive and tragic end, bringing out the worst qualities in people despite the best of intentions. 

The film takes its time to show us a complete life between two people and their young son and moves along at a steady sometimes tedious pace, which is the point of the film I would say. But like Boyhood (2014), the moments eventually grow into more than the sum of its parts and the dramatic ending is a poignant and satisfying one.

Aire Libre had its world premiere at the TIFF 2014 Toronto International Film Festival. 


1 comment:

Shiran said...

Sounds like an Argentinian "Kramer vs Kramer". Well reviewed.