Nine Queens


Reviewed by: Angus Wolfe Murray

Nine Queens
"The film is like a Chinese box. There are secrets within secrets within secrets."

As a debut by Argentinean writer/director Fabian Bielinsky, this has the audacity of youth. Sheer energy drives the story. By the end, it ties itself into knots. Clever can take your breath away, but clever-clever looks like a cheat.

Juan (Gaston Pauls) is a small time thief. In fact, he's not a thief at all, really. He's only scamming innocent shopkeepers to make enough money to pay off his father's debts.

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Marco (Ricardo Darin) is a small time thief, who thinks he's the moggie's moustache. His regular partner has left and he's stuck for a sidekick, a vital ingredient in con artistry. He watches Juan make a hash of a simple cash trick in a convenience store and helps him escape. Afterwards, they become a double act.

Watching them work is educational, but not exactly enthralling. It's only when they hear of a high-level, rare stamps forgery sting in the hotel where Marco's sister (Leticia Bredice) works that things hot up.

The film is like a Chinese box. There are secrets within secrets within secrets. Trust is not a word that Bielinsky understands. Who's fooling who? That is the intrigue. Like a script by David Mamet. Only in Buenos Aires. Without rules.

Reviewed on: 18 Jul 2002
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Two small-time con artists in Buenos Aires attempt a high level rare stamps fraud.
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Director: Fabian Bielinsky

Writer: Fabian Bielinsky

Starring: Gaston Pauls, Ricardo Darin, Leticia Bredice, Tomas Fonzi

Year: 2000

Runtime: 113 minutes

BBFC: 15 - Age Restricted

Country: Argentina


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