A man is wrongly jailed for murder while the real killer roams free. The murderer is an intellectual frustrated with his country’s never-ending cycle of betrayal and apathy. The convict is a simple man who finds life in prison more tolerable when something mysterious starts happening to him.
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A great accomplishment: making Dostoevsky sexy and current again. I'd say I was seared by the film, but the more accurate word is braised. I have to argue with myself over the merits of slow cinema in the times of rampant capitalism, but how else would we be able to enjoy such a fullness of the social landscape of Philippines in one single film? Stunning.
I love a go-for-broke DIY epic as much as the next fellow, but my admittedly inflated expectations for Norte were not met. Some great moments. The camera setups are often extraordinary, but if you are gonna use so many long takes then make some goddamn use of them! The blocking is dull and perfunctory. The execution is not equal to the scope. I like it better than The Place Beyond the Pines. Got that goin' for it.