First show: May 22
A sublime fantasy standing at the intersection of fairy tale and land art, Jauja expands upon the minimalism of Lisandro Alonso’s “Lonely Man Trilogy” (La Libertad, Los Muertos, Liverpool) to arrive at a radical re-imagining of the period piece. The story, co-scripted by the Argentine poet and novelist Fabián Casas, concerns a Danish military engineer (Viggo Mortensen) enlisted to pacify native Patagonia in 19th-century Argentina. As he sets out on his own to find his missing 14-year-old daughter, watching over his shoulder for an insane army deserter, time slows and the period trappings and echoes of ostensibly similar forays into terra incognito (John Ford’s The Searchers, Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness) melt away to reveal a most peculiar vision quest.
Strikingly filmed by Aki Kaurismäki’s longtime cinematographer Timo Salminen, Jauja distills the colors and distances of remote Patagonian landscapes with luminous clarity. Unpredictable until its final shots, Jauja continues to flirt with the imagination long after the closing credits roll. —Max Goldberg, SF International Film Festival. Written & Directed by Lisandro Alonso. Aspect Ratio – 1:133 (Academy). 2014 In Spanish and Danish with English subtitles. 108 minutes.
Mortensen plays a Danish engineer in Patagonia – Pam Grady, SF Chronicle
Dad hunts for girl across old Patagonia in bleak Western – Walt Addiego, SF Chronicle
JAUJA: Upcoming Showtimes