Cocote: Directed by Nelson Carlo de Los Santos Arias. With Vicente Santos, Jose Cruz, Yuberbi de la Rosa, José Miguel Fernández. An Evangelical Christian man attends the funeral services of his father in his hometown, where he has to participate in religious rites that clash with his beliefs and finds himself pressured to take revenge on the murderer.
“One of the highlights of last yearu0026#39;s Locarno Film Festival was this u0026#39;revengeu0026#39; drama from the Dominican Republic. Albertou0026#39;s father has been murdered and Alberto returns to his home town for what he believes will be his funeral but his father has already been buried and his family want him to participate in the 9 day mourning rituals though he does not believe in them.u003cbr/u003eu003cbr/u003eDirector Nelson Carlo De Los Santos Arias constructs his film u0026quot;Cocoteu0026quot; partly as documentary and partly as a straightforward drama, playing around with screen formats, colour and black and white. The technique alone decrees this is anything but a simple revenge thriller, drawing you into a strange biblical world that is more Old than New Testament with Alberto wanting to turn the other cheek while his sisters cry out for an eye for an eye. Alberto is now a card-carrying, (or in his case, a bible-carrying), Christian while the apparent u0026#39;Christianityu0026#39; of the Jesus Freaks of his home town is only a stoneu0026#39;s throw away from Voodooism.u003cbr/u003eu003cbr/u003eItu0026#39;s certainly a beautiful looking film. In instances like this, do we really need to understand why the director chose to film it the way he did or just simply luxuriate in the filmu0026#39;s u0026#39;styleu0026#39; and it is indeed stylish with the cross-cutting between u0026#39;the ritualsu0026#39; and the main plot never seeming a mere affectation or a distraction. In terms of u0026#39;actionu0026#39; not a great deal happens; there is an awful lot of praying and it may feel a little overlong but this is a world most of us know nothing about. I found it fascinating and a remarkable piece of u0026#39;pureu0026#39; cinema.”