This delicate Argentinean road movie depicting the touching encounter between a long-distance truck driver and the woman and child he takes as passengers won the Caméra d’Or for Best First Film at Cannes this year.
Screened as part of NZIFF 2011
“A tender road movie infused with a subtle sense of loss and loneliness, Las Acacias marks an assured and gently beguiling first feature from writer/director Pablo Giorgelli… The strength of Las Acacias lies in its simplicity and acutely observed range of easily recognisable human emotions. Rubén is a truck driver transporting lumber between Asuncion del Paraguay and Buenos Aires. He has agreed to take a passenger, Jacinta, who arrives burdened with bags and a cute, wide-eyed, chubby cheeked five-month-old baby, Anahí, who steals the audience’s heart in much the same way as she charms Rubén. Small acts of kindness and stolen glances gradually ease the initial discomfort between a weary Rubén and a wary Jacinta, creating the possibility of a bond that the audience becomes complicit in encouraging to grow… Giorgelli shows a great deal of confidence in his refusal to overstate the emotional stakes or sweep the story towards unnecessary melodrama… The carefully nuanced central performances convincingly suggest the blossoming affection between Rubén and Jacinta with the smallest gesture and slightest glance. In its best moments of quiet contemplation and piercing emotion, Las Acacias ultimately earns its place in a humanist tradition that stretches from Jean Renoir to Satyajit Ray and beyond.” — Allan Hunter, Screendaily