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Monday, May 26, 2008

MOTORCYCLE DIARIES (2004)

Enthralling South American set fact-based Bildungsroman of Che Guevara & his slightly older pal Alberto Granado sharing a last youthful spree riding a beat-up motorcycle on an epic northbound trek. The bike bites the dust, but Guevara finds his personal Pan-American revolutionary calling, empathizing with the layers of injustice & disease (literal & allegoric) in the teeming social fabric. Megger Walter Salles & scripter Jose Rivera stop their narrative in time to keep this handsome picaresque aglow with the uplifting blush of early activism, we needn’t contemplate the complications of Castro’s Stalinesque role to Che’s increasingly frustrated Trotsky. Instead, we can enjoy an utterly different buddy/buddy parallel imagining Gael Garcia Bernal’s Che playing Tamino to the Papageno of Rodrigo de la Serena’s Granado, who all but steals the picture. (I'd lay odds that the scripters had just that parallel in mind.)

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