Plot: IN THEATRES: MARCH 19, 2003 (NY)
Assisted by a cane, the unidentified lead (Alejandro Ferretis) of JAPON limps through a desolate canyon in his trademark red flannel jacket searching for deeper meaning. He has arrived at this remote Mexican location, escaping the city to paint and find the kind of serenity only nature can provide. Here he stays with Ascen (Magdalena Flores), an elderly woman who cooks for him and cleans his shirts. Ascen has lived on the land for forty years, but her nephew Juan Luis (Martin Serrano) is now reclaiming the land. Juan Luis intends to demolish a building which protects Ascen's modest dwelling, so he can collect money for the stones that hold up the structure. As the unidentified painter tries to get Ascen to fight for her home, he develops a sexual desire for his elderly host.
The importance of nature is prevalent throughout Carlos Reygadas' meditative work. Long, luminous takes allow thoughtful reflection as the film takes both its viewers and its protagonist on an existential journey. Adding to the languid beauty of the film is Arvo Part's moving score.
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