Gael Garcia Bernal, known for such hits as Amores Perros and Y tu Mama Tambien, is back starring in a new subtitled film called Even the Rain (en Espanol: Tambien la Lluvia) where he plays a director named Sebastian. He brings a Spanish film crew to Bolivia to make a movie about Columbus in the New World. The producer, Costa, played multi-dimensionally by Luis Tosar, works with him to make their dream project and put locals to work as extras for $2 a day. When they hire Daniel, the natural born actor Juan Carlos Aduviri, to play the Indian leader, his real life political battle threatens to end production.
Being one of Latin America’s poorest countries, Bolivia has a water shortage that shakes up the town. The rebels fight for their lives in a battle with the government that rages throughout the making of the movie. The screenwriter, Paul Laverty, who also wrote the movie Bread and Roses, knows how to convey a message with protests and heart. He gives dimensions to the characters and compares the government’s poor practices to the treatment of extras on a movie set. The title refers to the rain even being claimed by the leaders of the country and not delivered to the common people. Respect and basic human needs seem unobtainable in their world.
At times the story is too difficult to watch, even Sebastian closes the script at one tough moment. It is smart and funny at times that should translate well with any audience member in our community. We may have an avalanche of snow in Chicago but at least our government is not taking away our water supply as it melts.
The film has already garnered 13 Goya nominations and is Spain’s official submission for the 2011 Academy Awards. Rightfully earned, this heartbreaking story will hopefully leave us thinking about how we treat the people around us for a long time to come.
Even the Rain opens Feb 25 at the Landmark’s Century, 2828 N Clark. For ticket information and times visit http://www.landmarktheatres.com.