Family Members (Los miembros de la familia) (Mateo Bendesky, 2019): Argentina

Reviewed by Natsuna Kikkawa. Viewed at the AFI Fest 2019.

Before I watched the film, I always see the film trailer. First, when I saw the trailer of Family Members, I was thinking this is about the two young siblings, Lucas (Tomás Wicz who was acted in The Pack of Three, 2019) and Glida (Laila Maltz who was acted in A Family Submerged, 2018) face to their mother’s death. However, it’s not. Of course, the story is affected to her death. But, if I describe the film, I really want to say Family Members is about how the family relationship will be with sexuality after two sibling’s mother passed away.

Family Members is the winner of the Future Film at the Cinema Jove – Valencia International Film Festival 2019. The film was directed and written by Mateo Bendesky who was directed Together Alone in 2017. The story started in the train. The camera was close-up to Lucas’s face and Glida’s face. Until Lucas and Glida arrive at their mother’s house, they weren’t much talking. The very first conversation was from Glida, “How are you?.” I was surprised because they’ve already been together before arriving at the house. Because of this exchange, I couldn’t have absolutely no clue how the story is going. While they stayed at their mother’s house, Lucas was meeting some new people. Those people affected a lot to him. Most of things was the sexuality. Conversely, Glida took hard time being with his brother. She is older than Lucas, so she tried to help him. But most of the time, her speaking wasn’t successful him. Even though they weren’t talking a lot, they were always arguing when they spoke together. However their quarrel patched things up immediately. Therefore, both two siblings were taking the same time in the same place, but they were worried different one. Although, until this point, the story sounds like serious. the film had some comedies. The music wasn’t played so much, but it can influence the funny parts. In that way, their relationships and feelings changed as made some conversations and some experiences.

There are many objects which has an important meaning. Bendesky said he didn’t tell the exact meaning of each symbol to cast. So, cast was imagine the content. But, we can be noticed how the object is in the scene by faces or voices of actors and actresses. For instance, Lucas and Glida brought their mother’s hand for throwing away to the sea. Some people were laughing and others weren’t in other scene with the hand. It’s just the hand. Moreover, it’s the only one side. What will you think? I thought the symbol will make huge impact to viewers. It might be serious. It might be funny. In the Family Members, some objects were the same as this hand. However the film didn’t any horror scene. The light was kind of low, but It could connect to their mind and their relationship. The scene was going very slow. There were a lot of space on the screen. Everyone can be staying with the movie.

After mother, father, or both parents died, family relationship would be hard. But both Tomás Wicz and Laila Maltz was acted without knowledge of how people will feel when their parents passed away. It was so expressed. I really recommend this film to everyone. Family Members is the fiction film. However, this mind would be difference after watching the film. Some scenes might be happen everywhere. This family relationship would be occured reality.


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