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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

(aka "Matar a un hombre" or "Tuer un homme")

 

directed by Alejandro Fernández Almendras
Chile/France 2014

 

On his way home from work, Jorge (Daniel Candia, HIDDEN IN THE WOODS), lone caretaker for forest reserve outside the city, is harassed by a group of teenage thugs lead by older thief Kalule (Daniel Antivilo, VIOLETA WENT TO HEAVEN) who steals his diabetes testing kit. When his son Jorgito (Ariel Mateluna, THE DANCER AND THE THIEF) is shot trying to buy the kit back from Kalule, Jorge gets there just in time to see Kalule shoot himself and claim self-defense to the police. His own testimony fails to sway the court who only sentence Kalule to 540 days under a plea bargain. Two years later, the recently freed Kalule starts harassing Jorgito, his mother Marta (Alejandra Yañez) - now divorced from Jorge - and sister Nicole (Jennifer Salas). The police prove ineffectual in protecting them and the district attorney slow to issue a restraining order or revoke parole even after the family has provided evidence of the harassment. When Kalule assaults Nicole, the soft-spoken Jorge (emboldened after a tense encounter with an abusive poacher) decides to take matters into his own hands. Armed with his work rifle, he initiates his own campaign of terror against Kalule but soon discovers that it takes more than firepower TO KILL A MAN.

Although based on a true Chilean case, TO KILL A MAN eschews sensationalism in favor of an examination of the effect of vigilante justice on someone who is not an action movie hero. Scenes that happen outside of Jorge's perspective in the first half are filmed in a detached fashion with the characters and their aggressive acts physically dwarfed by the landscape in the framing of cinematographer Inti Briones (THE LONELIEST PLANET). In the latter half of the film, Jorge both shares and is subject to that perspective: cut off to the point that he is denied righteous outrage at the authorities leaping to investigate Kalule's disappearance after being so slow to protect his family, and all but physical release in his encounter with a hooker. He is also physically diminished by the camera amidst his travails in the park landscape that he knows so well as he wrestles with his conscience and tries to do the right thing. In a film where performances are not foregrounded, Candia and Antivilo are excellent as, respectively, a mild-mannered father who perceives personal failure in everything from his own physical health to the institutional inability or unwillingness to exact justice and a villain who is not so much cunning as reckless and craven. Definitely not for DEATH WISH fans.

Eric Cotenas

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Theatrical Release: 1 October 2014 (France)

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DVD Review: Film Movement - Region 1 - NTSC

Big thanks to Eric Cotenas for the Review!

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Distribution

Film Movement

Region 1 - NTSC

Runtime 1:22:00
Video

2.38:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 6.93 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

Bitrate

Audio Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1; Spanish Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo
Subtitles English, none
Features Release Information:
Studio: Film Movement

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 2.38:1

Edition Details:
• Interview with director Alejandro Fernández Almendras (16:9; 14:50)
• Deleted Scenes (16:9; 17:42)
• Biographies
• Theatrical Trailer (16:9; 1:13)
• Bonus Short Film 'Our Blood' (Max Chan, 16:9; 25:13)
• Film Movement Trailers
• About Film Movement

DVD Release Date: December 2nd, 2014
Amaray

Chapters 12

 

 

 

Comments

Shot in high definition on a Red camera, TO KILL A MAN looks overall softish in this progressive, anamorphic transfer because of the film's dependence on practical lighting in all scenes (including the night scenes in which the yellows were pushed farther in post-production). The Dolby Digital 5.1 track is largely front oriented with the surrounds being generally used for atmosphere. The disc includes optional English subtitles and closed-captioning.

The film's deleted scenes include a couple extensions to existing scenes (usually without dialogue), a visit by the Jorge to the doctor, and a completely alternate version of the Kalule's attack on Nicole as well as a split screen comparison (the less suggestive version used in the finished film is stronger but not in poor taste). The interview with the director includes discussion of the true crime case that inspired the story, the director's past work and how the differences in style were necessary for the story, as well as the framing and pacing choices.

The disc also includes the trailer, a bonus short film by Max Chan about characters who break another kind of taboo, and six other Film Movement trailers (three of which are also used as start-up trailers) including the already-covered FOR A WOMAN and CANNIBAL.

  - Eric Cotenas

 


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DVD Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

 

 

Distribution

Film Movement

Region 1 - NTSC

 



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