Everybody Has A Plan


Reviewed by: Amber Wilkinson

Everybody Has A Plan
"Ana Piterbarg attempts the acrobatic and ill-advised feat of presenting the plot of a B movie noir through the prism of arthouse sombreness."

When the presence of the mighty Viggo Mortensen in a dual role - and speaking perfect Spanish! - can't save your movie from mediocrity, then you know you're in trouble. So it is with Ana Piterbarg's directorial film debut, which comes after a decade of plying her trade on Argentinian TV and sees her attempt the acrobatic and ill-advised feat of presenting the plot of a B movie noir through the prism of arthouse sombreness.

Mortensen plays twin brothers who, of course, are yin and yang. Pedro, who scratches a living on an island in the ParanĂ¡ Delta, may indulge in the wholesome sounding pastime of beekeeping, but he's trouble through and through. In fact, in one of the many ponderous examples of symbolism that weigh down the film, he's so bad, he's going rotten on the inside, with his consumptive cough the outward manifestation of terminal cancer. Meanwhile, somewhere not so very far away, in a posh Buenos Aires apartment, his identical sibling Agustin is telling his wife (the wonderful Soledad Villamil, who shouldn't be reduced to terrible roles like this) that the adoption she is desperate for is off the agenda.

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So, when Villainous Viggo turns up on Virtuous Viggo's doorstep, it seems a way out may be presenting itself - but is it to good to be true?

The answer, as any B movie fan knows, is of course, and as Virtuous Viggo tries a bit of villainy on for size, he finds himself in a whole lot of trouble back on the island. Things may initially look promising thanks to a frisson with his brother's young beekeeping assistant Rosa (Sofia Gala Castaglione) - who welcomes the sudden change in Pedro's personality without a second thought and apparently has a thing for grizzled ancient men - but we have to watch an awful lot of water flow past, not to mention lingering shots of the local flora and fauna, before we arrive at the 'thriller' end of the plot.

None of the blame lies with Mortensen, who does his best to bring depth to his characters, but there is no real sense of what motivates either brother. Castaglione, however, doesn't have the same level of acting prowess and, if anything, drags her wafer-thin character even further into doe-eyed caricataure. Lucio Bonelli's cinematography looks lovely but it feels as though the editing team had gone for a lie down. You could probably have a snooze through half of this too, if you feel like, it and still not miss a thing.

Reviewed on: 31 May 2013
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Everybody Has A Plan packshot
Twin brothers - one a beekeeper with a criminal history, one a doctor - are drawn together into dangerous confrontations in the Argentinian swamplands.
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Director: Ana Piterbarg

Writer: Ana Piterbarg

Starring: Viggo Mortensen, Soledad Villamil, Daniel Fanego

Year: 2011

Runtime: 117 minutes

BBFC: 15 - Age Restricted

Country: Argentina, Spain, Germany

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