‘The passenger’ – Olé la Vane

‘The passenger’ It is the first film by Ral Cerezo and Fernando González Gómez together. Fernando Gonzlez Gmez had already participated in two films before (‘Standard’ and ‘Zombie World 2’) but, like Ral Cerezo, almost all of his filmography is made up of short films, something evident when watching the film. In the first place, because it is clear that behind this production there is more will than resources, and secondly, because its premise would work better in a short film. Starting from this base, ‘The passenger’ reminiscent of so many other Spanish genre film projects made with great care, few resources (‘REC’ is the first that comes to mind) and with a team dedicated to the maximum in each scene. The starting point is simple and promising. A group of people who are totally different from each other are brought together by an application similar to BlaBlaCar and have to go on a road trip together with the handicap that the driver is a person with great social needs (that is, he does not shut up even under the hood). Water). This serves the film to create four stereotyped characters, working as a satire towards that type of people who can feel identified with them and to laugh a little at the current situation of Spanish society. In a few minutes we will grow fond of Blasco (played by Ramiro Blas, who steals the show), a very accurate and parody portrait of the classic Spanish macho who is impossible not to associate with the voters of a certain political sector. It is precisely this character along with his van (La Vane) that sustains the whole. The rest of the characters are nothing more than a complement to Blasco and when they don’t interact with him they don’t have much to contribute, added to some rather discreet performances, the characters are quite poor. Compliant but with nothing else to highlight. The way they introduce the fantasy is not original, but they do it in a way that integrates perfectly with its condition as a road movie. In general, this is a film that is not the least bit ashamed to show what its references are and where they were inspired to carry out this story. He has a lot of John Carpenter in his fantastic section and in the road movie part he reminds ‘Little Miss Sunshine’, especially because of the way they treat the relationship between the passengers. It’s not original but it doesn’t sell you the bike either. There’s a lot of practical effect, which doesn’t have to be good per se, but in these kinds of movies they make the physical more physical, slimy and disgusting. What gives her the most personality is the fact that she is 100% Spanish, without fuss. We will see a lot of classic symbology here and we will hear paso doble not exactly on a few occasions. As I said at the beginning, it is clear that the birth of this story was conceived for a short film, not for a feature film, and there the film suffers, especially in its last act where everything is excessively long and takes too long to finish. Some horror situations are too forced and could easily have been cut to favor their rhythm. The beginning is really fun, but little by little you notice that the gas is running out, he ends up living off the sparks of Blasco (which, I repeat, is the best of the set and has some great moments). The directors show that they have visual strength but do not know how to manage it, using resources in a crazy and totally excessive way, sometimes seeming that they simply use them because they look good on screen.

‘The passenger’ it is very irregular, it makes some decisions that are not in the best interest of the whole and the visual ambition of the directors is out of control. But it is also an almost entirely funny film, a good feast of practical effects and has moments by Blasco that are memorable. A sympathetic, imperfect and harmless proposal. Note: 5.0

By Marc Sacristán García


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