Esteban Espinosa (Ricardo Darin) is a master taxidermist and an epileptic who often speculates about committing the perfect crime. When his friend invites him on an ill-fated hunting trip, the opportunity to put his idle thoughts into action becomes a reality. But Esteban’s keen observational skills and meticulous planning may not be enough to navigate through the horrific world he uncovers in the dark woods and back roads of southern Argentina.
When we first meet Esteban, he is putting the finishing touches to his latest work of art – a stuffed fox. He is a taxidermist whose wife has just left him. A taxidermist suffering from epilepsy, who has a photographic memory. Esteban is a loner, but in his dreams, he fantasises about using his photographic memory to rob a bank, or to orchestrate a grand heist. Desperate to get out of his depressive state follows a friend on a hunting trip. The irony is that Estaban does not like killing nor hunting animals. A fatal accident then happens on this hunt, that uncovers some peculiar matters. Will it throw him into further despair or will it give him a brand new lease on life? Intrigued? So were we. Find out how he pieces together a mystery with his photographic memory, that then alters the life of a pretty woman.
The heart of this story is as dark as the Patagonian woods. The way the movie is shot, makes the open forest feel oppressive and wide green space, claustrophobic. The dreamlike sequence and the detachment of body, just seconds before the epileptic fit hits Esteban is beautifully shot too. Hence the name of the movie.
Great cinematography. Brilliantly written and directed by the late Fabián Bielinsky.The plot itself generates plenty of suspense, but Bielinksy’s wonderful direction and chilling soundtrack really adds a new layer of eeriness. This unfortunately had been his last film. Great acting by Ricardo Darin, an actor probably known internationally for his lead role in ‘The Secret in their eyes’ or El secreto de sus ojos (2009).