/slash ½ 2017 – Day 2: El Bar (The Bar)

El Bar
Spain 2017
Written by Jorge Guerricaechevarría & Álex de la Iglesia
Directed by Álex de la Iglesia
Watched on 05.05.2017

“The Bar” was the third movie of Álex de la Iglesia that I’ve seen. “Witching & Bitching” was quite funny (especially the first 15-20 minutes), and “My Big Night” mostly hilarious. “The Bar”, however, was a huge disappointment. It started off well enough. I liked the basic idea behind it, and for 15-30 minutes, the movie managed to grip me. After that, though, it started to unravel quickly. Iglesia offers up a couple of nice ideas, only to drop them without giving them a second thought. The characters are one-dimensional, walking clichés, and thus uninteresting, with the way they portrayed the homeless especially questionable and problematic. The actions of the characters got dumber by the minute. Having Blanca Suárez run around half-naked for the last bit of the movie was completely unnecessary and felt incredibly forced (and misogynic). And towards the end, there were a couple of overly dramatic scenes that didn’t work for me at all. (The fact that one of the characters is called “Nacho” probably didn’t help. In the scenes where Elena desperately called his name while stretching out her arms, I half-expected them to cut to a large bag of potato chips.) Mostly, though, “The Bar” felt twice as long as it actually is – which is never a good sign. Yes, the first quarter or so was nice, the acting ok, and there’s the occasional tense moment. But when the characters repeatedly act as stupid as they do here, and the tone of the film starts to feel off, that doesn’t help much.
3/10

IMDB

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