Screened as part of NZIFF 2016

The Clan 2015

El Clan

Directed by Pablo Trapero

Delivered with muscularity and verve, Pablo Trapero’s 80s true crime drama unravels the exploits of a well-connected Buenos Aires businessman and his rugby-star son and their ruthless kidnapping and ransom operation.

Argentina/Spain In Spanish with English subtitles
110 minutes CinemaScope/DCP
R13 (violence, offensive language and sex scenes)

Director/Screenplay

Producers

Hugo Sigman
,
Matías Mosteirín
,
Augustín Almodóvar
,
Pedro Almodóvar
,
Esther García
,
Pablo Trapero

Photography

Julián Apezteguía

Editors

Pablo Trapero
,
Alejandro Carrillo Penovi

Production designer

Sebastián Orgambide

Costume designer

Julio Suarez

Music

Sebastián Escofet

With

Guillermo Francella (Arquímedes)
,
Peter Lanzani (Alejandro)
,
Lili Popovich (Epifanía)
,
Gastón Cocchiarale (Maguila)
,
Giselle Motta (Silvia)
,
Franco Masini (Guillermo)
,
Antonia Bengoechea (Adriana)
,
Stefania Koessl (Mónica
,
Alejandro’s girlfriend)

Festivals

Venice
,
Toronto
,
San Sebastián 2015; Rotterdam 2016

Awards

Best Director
,
Venice Film Festival 2015

In Argentina everybody knows about the Puccio Clan case. In 1985 it was discovered that a spate of kidnappings and murders had been the work of the Puccios, a well-established Catholic family with five children from San Isidro, a high-class suburb of Buenos Aires. They had held the hostages in their basement, then, after the ransoms had been paid, murdered them. Mamá Puccio and the daughters were allegedly oblivious, but the sons were up to their necks, none more so than golden-haired national rugby star Alejandro (Peter Lanzani), used as bait to attract victims by the controlling paterfamilias. It is through the conflicted eyes of young Alejandro that the story unravels in Pablo Trapero’s fearsomely compulsive film.

“Guillermo [The Secret of Their Eyes] Francella’s performance as Arquímedes Puccio… is one of the damnedest things you’ll ever see… Few actors have made evil so insidiously accessible.” — Michael Sragow, Film Comment

“Trapero stages the kidnapping set pieces with stirring dispatch, amping up the action with a bold, ironic, propulsive use of such pop tunes as the Kinks’ ‘Sunny Afternoon’ and David Lee Roth’s ‘Just a Gigolo’…

Despite the mayhem and Puccio’s inevitable downward spiral, the heart of the film remains the strained dynamic between Arquímedes and Alejandro: a monstrous father demanding loyalty and obedience at all costs from the prized son… Francella and Lanzani are excellent… throughout this nervy and provocative picture.” — Gary Goldstein, LA Times