12-year-old Juana goes to a British school in Buenos Aires, where she fails both socially and academically. Surrounded by the same routine, going to class and trying to pull her social life back together, Juana goes through the strange days one week before the exams that will determine her future.
A defiantly unsentimental rendition of the all too familiar coming-of-age scenario, Martín Shanly’s debut film sheds light on the many complications that await at the gates of adolescence. As with the rest of the Argentine New Wave, this is crafted with an entirely unique ecstasy for the cinema.
A miserable, enigmatic 12-year-old girl struggles at school and with relationships. Her mother doesn't listen to her, her father is absent, and she is tested for mental health problems. It's an absorbing look into the mind of a troubled adolescent, shot in a naturalistic way, with a great, subtle performance from the young lead. But don't expect any answers.
Ea nu poate să studieze și facă un prieten. Profesori o subestimează și mama ei se gândește că ea e bolnavă mintal. Dar e prea timidă să ia măsuri de bună voie și doar timp este pierdut degeaba. "Juana a los 12" descrie neființa și neputință care sunt prea brutale pentru o fată de 11 ani. Foarte sfîșietor.// 勉強もできず友だちは作れず、教師からは見くびられ、母親からは心の病気を心配される。それでも自分から何かするには臆病すぎて、時間だけが無意味に失われる。今作は11歳の少女が抱くには残酷すぎる虚無と無力感を描く。頗る悲痛。
A touch of Bunuel (the oneiric scene in particular), hints of Haneke (allusions about cruelty and deception abound), a pervasive and inexplicable sense of dread. This portrait of a disaffected (?), depressed (?), introvert (?), manipulative (?) bored (?) young privileged girl lingers in your mind.
Pretty cool how it's shot so naturalistically. I also enjoyed the performance by the lead actress - she's able to say a lot with a very restrained performance. Overall, though, it's not an exceptionally entertaining film.
In the end Juana learns to manipulate the adults who seem to either ignore her or push her around. Whether there is actual mental illness involved - this is left intentionally vague I feel, and the film works better for it. What will she be when she grows up? Perhaps a well-adjusted bureaucrat; perhaps a serial killer. Impossible to tell though the movie does end on an ominous note.
The Making of a Sociopath. Light in tone, it kind of drifts along at a gentle pace. Problems pile up for troubled 12-year-old Juana who seems utterly disaffected. Completely narcissistic, Juana spirals into herself despite of (and perhaps because of) the world around her. She seems entirely oblivious to anything outside of her immediate purvey. When we do get one brief look into her psyche, it's frightening as hell.
Interesting character, relatively uninteresting movie. The movie doesn't really do a whole lot with her, other than giving us a snapshot into her life, and her actions don't seem to produce long-term consequences, even though she is eventually called out for her behavior.