Country: Chile / France
Movie Review: Raoul Ruiz was able to finish “Night Across The Street” before he dies at the age of 70, making it a meaningful goodbye in a great career. Certainly it was not a coincidence that Ruiz had returned to its origins, Chile, to make this reflective and ironic film about time, life, and death. By mixing real and surreal aspects, he encloses everything that he considers life, through the story of Celso (Sergio Hernandéz), his main character. Celso is one step closer to retirement and seems disoriented with that fact, keeping the mind constantly occupied with visits to his childhood. In these frequent absences from reality, he contacts with the writer Jean Giono, the musician Beethoven, or the pirate John Long Silver, three great storytellers, according to him. These fictional scenes are intertwined with other that we assume to be real. It was almost if Ruiz had an urge to share all his collected knowledge throughout the years; history, politics, cinema, dreams, technology, landscape change, spiritualism, love, and even a crime subplot in a doomed house; everything was a good pretext to tell us about life. But the occasional sound of an alarm clock is still there to take him away from his cinematic dreams and remind him that lifetime has reaching an end. Beautifully shot using faint lights and a profound sense of nostalgia, this surrealist film wouldn’t make Buñuel or Fellini ashamed of its haunting inaccessibility.