Argentina, 77 min
A woman visits her boyfriend, locked up in a prison a few hours’ drive away from Buenos Aires. Each week, she manages as best as she can to accomplish her mission: provide her boyfriend food, drugs and love. In an exercise of visceral realism, Edgardo Castro constructs a harrowing love story with Las Ranas.
In Spanish, ‘rana’ means frog but, in jail slang, it’s the term used to name the women who come to visit those who are locked up. These women wait for this encounter with religious discipline in order to prolong the illusion of a romantic relationship in the context of the confinement. The new film by Edgardo Castro, a filmmaker who is a fan of downward spirals, dilated time and distended areas, follows the obstinate approach of one of these ‘ranas’. Each week, she visits her boyfriend, incarcerated in a prison a few hours’ drive away from Buenos Aires. The film makes use of total intimacy with its character: its camera lays an omnipresent gaze, like an inscription on the young woman’s skin. We thus share her day-to-day life in the suburbs of the Argentinian capital, where she tries to manage as best she can to accomplish her weekly mission: to provide her boyfriend a dose of food, drugs and love. More than a film, Las Ranas is an exercise of visceral realism, the impossible diary of an anti-heroine. A harrowing love story.
Elena López Riera