Screened as part of NZIFF 2019

La Flor: Part I 2018

Directed by Mariano Llinás

Spanning international espionage, torch song melodrama, supernatural horror and silent film homage, Mariano Llinás’ eccentric and expansive narrative epic is a Herculean film creation – and at 14 hours, a record-breaking one. Screening in three parts.

(152 mins + 15 min intermission + 58 mins)

Argentina In English, French, German, Russian, Spanish and Swedish with English subtitles
225 minutes DCP



Laura Citarella


Agustín Mendilaharzu


Agustín Rolandelli
Alejo Moguillansky

Costume designers

Carolina Sosa Loyola
Flora Caligiuri


Elisa Carricajo
Valeria Correa
Pilar Gamboa
Laura Paredes


New York
London 2018; Rotterdam 2019

Production designer

Laura Caligiuri


Gabriel Chwojnik


At the beginning of this unparalleled movie event, director Mariano Llinás, looking exactly like a man who’s spent the last ten years of his life completing a film, explains to the camera what we’re about to witness. Six episodes – some without endings – and a multitude of genres, languages and destinations swirl around four actresses, who are on screen from start to finish. Llinás sounds eternally grateful – and a little apologetic – for their unerring devotion to his mad project, making it clear that La Flor is by and for these talented women.

In the consistently surprising 14 hours that follow, a cursed mummy attacks a team of scientists, an estranged musical couple reunite to record another hit ballad, a secret society schemes over the elixir of youth, and an outfit of secret agents awaits a showdown with rival assassins. Later, we meet a filmmaker who’s obsessed with shooting trees, and there’s even a silent black-and-white remake of Renoir’s A Day in the Country in the mix.

Easily the longest film this festival has ever programmed, Llinás’ follow-up to the brilliant Extraordinary Stories (NZIFF08) may also be one of the most playful we’ve ever seen – too playful for the realms of mass-produced modern television, to which it bears no comparison. With its offbeat creativity and reinvention of cinematic clichés – often refocused through the gaze of Llinás’ wonderful female troupe – La Flor figures movie-making, when liberated from both feature film duration norms and long-form narrative expectations, as a kind of giant artistic and storytelling sandpit. A marvel. — Tim Wong

La Flor is screened in three parts, across six self-contained episodes. While we recommend viewing the parts chronologically as intended by the filmmaker, screenings can also be attended out of order or independently.

Episode I A low-key ode to Val Lewton horror pictures and the B-movies “Americans once were able to make with their eyes closed, and now can’t anymore.” After the delivery of a mummified woman from a nearby archaeological dig, three female researchers must contend with its malevolent curse.

Episode II In this romantic melodrama centred on a famous pop duo, a diva pines for her lover and musical partner. Her personal assistant, meanwhile, becomes involved with a mysterious cult seeking a rare scorpion whose venom, they believe, offers the secret to eternal youth.

La Flor: Part II

La Flor: Part III