Neruda ★★★½

Of Pablo Larraín's two biopics this year, I much prefer JACKIE. They are both ambitious and feature stunning craftsmanship. NERUDA, for all it's glorious cinematography, meanders too much narratively for my tastes. Its thematic ambition is admirable and it does make for a poetic experience, but some of it became distracting in the middle.

That said, the film nior aesthetic was fascinating and I love how it interweaves with the film's notions of identity. Larraín wonderfully taps into this idea of how the world shapes us in our own stories and how consuming that is at times.

No one can deny the craftsmanship on display here. The performances are equally as captivating. NERUDA will simply come down to whether or not you enjoy (and can engage with) the risks it takes on the surface in telling this story. I loved most of it, but some of it fell flat for me.

The interrogation scene with the singer, though, will go down as some of my favorite filmmaking of the year. Amazing thematic depth in just a few moments.

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