Vaguely set in 1935 during Paraguay’s Chaco War with Bolivia, Encica’s film is made up of a small handful of long takes in long and medium shots of an aging couple waiting for their son, who left to join the war, to return home to his plantation. The eponymous hammock is the couple’s meeting place before and after work, as well as during siestas; they split up so that the man, Ramón (Ramon del Rio), can work in the fields and his wife Candida (Georgina Genes) can clean the laundry.
Together, the married couple just barely relax, fidgeting and fretting about their son and everything else, finding their worry about their son expressing itself in a continual discomfort and restlessness, a combined result of Ramón’s hope and Candida’s fatalistic pessimism. Apart, their son is stilling haunting them, absent in the frame but vocal on the soundtrack. –The Auteurs Notebook