Dos Hermanos is a quiet but brilliant film. By “quiet,” I don’t mean the movie itself is. The movie is, in fact, everything but quiet. It’s loud with personality, with beautiful music and complicated truths told in the simplest form. But it’s seemingly quiet, mainly because like myself, many are bound to underestimate it. Dos Hermanos tells the story of the relationship between a brother and sister. Simple.
But no relationship is ever simple. Argentine actors Graciela Borges and Antonio Gasalla play Susana and Marcos, a pair of siblings who find themselves painfully lonely at a late stage in their lives. They’ve got no one but each other. And they can’t stand each other.
Borges is amazingly believable as a delirious, materialistic, superficial, odious yet hilarious 50-something alcoholic. She lies to get through the day: she’s a realtor, a broker, an art dealer, a friend to the celebs. She never goes without her wine and Chanel bag, and scolds her brother for not wearing a suit properly. She breaks her brother’s heart by selling their late mother’s house, and constantly tells him he’s making a fool of himself. Marcos, after decades of hiding beneath his mother’s gentle wing, finds himself without his shield and is forced to finally go out and live. Gasalla is fantastic, and like the movie itself, delivers greatness through a subtle and formidable performance.
Together, Susana and Marcos split their time between Buenos Aires and a new home in Uruguay, where Marcos begins to find happiness in the littlest things. Because after all, the best things in life are those which tend to go by unnoticed: a great risotto, a good wine, a beautiful view, and the pleasure of watching an excellent play.
Award-winning director Daniel Burman succeeds in sharing the tale of two people who are nothing alike and are thrown together by the one thing we wish we could control: our blood. The charm and beauty of Dos Hermanos shines through its impeccable writing, perfectly fitting music, and two performances that truly represent the complexity of a human being. A person can be likable and hateful, can appear to be weak and then surprise you with overwhelming strength.
Filled with funny and heartbreaking scenes, Dos Hermanos is a film about family, unexpected support, and the gut-wrenching task of being honest with oneself. Two people who lead seemingly ordinary lives, Susana and Marcos show us what it’s like to grow old with fear, regret and apprehension, and try to turn those last years around with admirable bravery.
Watch the Spanish language trailer below:
This film was reviewed at the Cine Las Americas International Film Festival. Cine Las Americas is a multi-cultural, 501(c)3 non-profit organization based in Austin Texas. The mission of Cine Las Americas is to promote cross-cultural understanding and growth by educating, entertaining and challenging diverse audiences through film and media arts.