The coincidence in billboard of two films as The kingdom, by Rodrigo Sorogoyen, and Animals without a collar, the first full-length film by the short filmmaker and long-distance advertising director Jota Linares, is a good indicator of the extent to which the accumulation of cases of political corruption has permeated our collective imagination. The two films also offer a certain testimony of the resistance that our fiction cinema seems to have to tackle, frontally and with all the consequences, the keys to a truly political cinema. In both cases, the references that have served as inspiration are more or less familiar, before as a functional substratum of recognition that as a (bad) intentional and insidious wink, but the generic keys that end up taking the helm of the story are, in a case, the thriller and, in the other, the melodrama.
ANIMALS WITHOUT NECKLACE
Address: Jota Linares.
Interpreters: Natalia de Molina, Daniel Grao, Ignacio Mateos, Natalia Mateo.
Gender: drama. Spain, 2018.
Duration: 96 minutes
It agrees, however, to recognize -and celebrate- the high ambition with which Jota Linares, also a screenwriter, faces this debut. In Animals without a collar, the access to the power of a representative of the new policy of the left is compromised by the emergence of a secret from the past: its connection with the potential black sheep of the bourgeois family that had employed its mother will become the persistent stain that it can not even erase a willingness to transparency willing to assume a problematic past of addictions and vital turmoil. The film stands, thus, in a melodrama about the return of the repressed that enables in the territory of the intimate a space for the pacts of oblivion in the name of pragmatism.
Daniel Grao confronts his character by turning his face into an impeccable neutral mask, whose appearance of integrity transpar- ents the brilliance of ambition. It is not his the most grateful role of a role that has in the characters of Natalia de Molina and Ignacio Mateos the great carriers of dramatic tension: the two are, so to speak, the guardians of the secret, that the first will try protect by all means against the pressures of the second to destabilize the mirage. La Nora -not at all casual- baptism of Natalia de Molina and Víctor de Mateos could have been, respectively, the suffering and sacrificed heroine and the villain of a melodrama more friendly to the functional archetypes than to the chiaroscuros. Linares and his interpreters elevate them to turn them into something else: an emancipated identity and a tragic figure.