A film by Santiago Mitre
Argentina, 2011, 110 min. In Spanish with English subtitles
Subjects: Latin American Studies, Politics, Cinema Studies, Argentina
"Winner of Special Jury Prizes at BAFICI (Buenos Aires) and Locarno, and a highlight of the New York Film Festival, El Estudiante charts the political awakening of a student at the University of Buenos Aires.
In this tense and shrewdly observed bildungsroman, a brilliant successor to films like Jean-Luc Godard’s Tout va bien (1972) and Krzysztof Zanussi’s Camouflage (1977), the apathetic yet seductive Roque (Lamothe) is drawn into the campus intrigue of warring student political parties, and finds himself torn between two competing impulses: the radical idealism of his girlfriend, a teacher assistant, and the realpolitik cunning of his mentor, a retired politician turned professor.
Screenwriter-director Mitre, who has written award-winning scripts for Pablo Trapero and Walter Salles, makes his feature film debut with a sophisticated and subtle meditation on the still-unhealed wounds of Argentina’s Dirty War, and on the clash between old-guard Peronists and a younger generation of leftist activists in Buenos Aires today.”
—The Museum of Modern Art
– Best Film, Best Actor, Cartagena Film Festival
– Best Film, Gijón Film Festival
– Special Jury Prize, Locarno Film Festival
– Special Jury Prize, Best Cinematography and FEISAL Award, Buenos Aires Independent Film Festival (BAFICI)
– Best First Film, Cinema Tropical Awards
– Best First Film, Best Screenplay, and Best Emerging Actor, Argentina’s Silver Condors
– Best First Film, Best Screenplay, Best Emerging Actor, Best Emerging Actress, Argentina Academy of Film’s Sur
– FIPRESCI Award, Valdivia Film Festival
– Best Director, Amazonas Film Festival, Brazil
– Official Selection, Toronto Film Festival
– Official Selection, New York Film Festival
– Official Selection, Buenos Aires Independent Film Festival (BAFICI)
– Official Selection, Cineasti del Presente, Locarno Film Festival
– Official Selection, Cartagena Film Festival
– Official Selection, Thessaloniki International Film Festival
– Official Selection, Gijón Film Festival
– Official Selection, Valdivia Film Festival
– Official Selection, Amazonas Film Festival
"A taut, incisive look at university wheeling and dealing."
– Robert Koehler, Variety
"A speedy depiction of university politics and the spirited radicalism associated with them, El Estudiante announces 31-year-old Argentinean filmmaker Santiago Mitre as a South American Aaron Sorkin. It might be the first serious political narrative about undergraduate matriculation."
– Eric Kohn, IndieWire