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Released 2010, Venezuela – Director Marcel Rasquin
The raw intensity of Hermano proves that reality can often be more emotionally charged than the most asinine blockbusters. Every aspect of this story is believable. The mere fact that its truths exist in our generation’s world is more telling of humanity than we want to accept. This is a story within a story within a story type of film. Very meta. Hermano reminds the world that dreams and desires exist well beyond the borders of common perception, but then again, so do the realities of responsibility and survival. While all of us are born into our own individual paths and challenges, the truth remains that some of us start higher up the mountain than others. Hermano does not seek your pity – only your awareness.
Julio (Eliu Armas) and Daniel (Fernando Moreno) grow up as brothers, not by blood, but by a deeper connection. As their youth begins to fade, their shared vision of the future begins to split. While soccer always lies on the horizon of possibilities, reality sets in when the reckless violence of poverty and small town survival forces its way into their lives. And, just when the story begins to sink in, Hermano lifts off and twists and turns as it insists on placing its audience directly into the minds and hearts of its characters.
The most memorable and inventive pieces of this film are the back alley one-on-one soccer matches between Julio and Daniel. There is no such sporting event, no matter how organized and manicured, that will ever compare justly to the instinctive conflicts of brother versus brother. The love they share for one another bursts through the physicality of these scenes, which are filmed spectacularly and uniquely.
This story pushes us out of our comfort zones and promotes the maturity of its audience. If more people saw this movie and others like it, humanity would be one major step closer to being on the same page with one another. Hermano is a story of family, of brotherhood, of poverty, of cultures, of nations, of desire, of revenge, of heart, of truth. The film is corporeal, it is violent, and it is every emotion at once.
So sit back, grab a bowl of popcorn & stretch your legs, your mind, and your soul.