The Secret in Their Eyes Review
The Secret in Their Eyes is a 2009 Argentine crime film that received the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film. It is in my opinion not worthy of its Oscar and quite a weak and annoying film.
The story is its biggest problem. There is nothing here that is remotely memorable or at least interesting or engaging. It is a dull and plain tired procedural that revolves around a murder and a rape which is so typical and never distinguishing itself from other films of the same genre. It was to me boring from start to finish. It has its moments, especially some warm and quiet sequences, but it is mostly too familiar and ordinary to be enjoyed.
But what took me out of it the most is definitely its violence. The Secret in Their Eyes is awfully violent and just difficult to watch. For a guy who is not a fan of violent and harsh scenes, this certainly was not for me. And it seemed pointless and too sensational. Also, there are some disgusting sexual scenes and the movie is filled with cursing. The characters literally curse the whole running time which is super annoying.
Speaking of the characters, they are flat. But the two lead characters are solidly developed which was great to see. However, none of the others fail to bring anything to the table. But what is the silver lining in this movie is definitely the acting. The movie is filled with extraordinary performances, really fantastic job done from each and every actor. Of course the highlight is Ricardo Darin. He is absolutely superb in his role and he brings the necessary professionalism to this otherwise mediocre film. He really is a great Argentinean actor which is also evident in 2014’s ‘Wild Tales‘ where he was also outstanding. Soledad Villamil also did a terrific job and she even stole some scenes from Ricardo how good, subtle and natural she is. They both really did an amazing job and they are the sole reason to see this movie in my humble opinion.
The directing is also really good. Juan Jose Campanella did a really good job. And the movie is well filmed and well acted across the board. But the cinematography is nothing to write home about and the script is mediocre. And the tone of the movie is too dark and violent with just a couple of warm sequences that are just not enough unfortunately. And the movie is also awfully edited and paced with the running time being needlessly over two hours. It definitely did not deserve its Oscar and that choice was once again too political.