After cutting a man’s throat during a caravan robbery, Aballay looks in the eyes of the victim’s terrified son, and something breaks down inside of him. Scared of himself, from that moment on the criminal gaucho decides to follow the lesson from the Stylites, penitent mystics who purged their sins by climbing to a column and never come down: he gets on his horse willing to stay up there forever. The years go by turning him into a sort of saint before the eyes of the town people, but the memory of the eyes of that kid won’t leave him as he knows they will come for him to get their revenge. Just like in the short story of the same title Antonio Di Benedetto wrote while imprisoned during the military dictatorship, Aballay goes deep into the wild history of 19th century Argentina embodying the definitive local western: one that joins American Far West with our bloody cinematographic gaucho genre, from Gaucho Nobility to Favio’s Juan Moreira, with Pampa bárbara and Fregonese also hovering over the horizon. –Mar del Plata International Film Festival
Coach robbery, murder, revenge. Reduced to archetypes, the opening is great. An antihero - one of us instead of a gunslinger. A villain turned into a saint. At times funny, often to be pitied. On the other hand, a straight political allegory on the cruel history of Argentina. But aren't all Western allegories?