The Film Critic

In this innocuous Argentinian comedy (2013), a crotchety, Hollywood-averse movie reviewer finds his life turning magically into a formulaic rom-com. A young Woody Allen might have worked wonders with this premise, but writer-director Hernán Guerschuny uses it mainly to reaffirm the sort of rom-com cliches the hero disdains. (Like Allen, however, the director associates serious filmmaking exclusively with Europe in the 50s and 60s; the hero’s knowledge of art cinema seems to begin and end with the early French New Wave.) What keeps this from getting too smug is Guerschuny’s obvious sympathy for the reviewer’s daily routine. As in much recent South American art cinema, the depictions of working life are vivid and relatable, throwing the more fantastic ideas into sharp relief. In French and Spanish with subtitles.