No 15

Director: Pablo Larrain
Cast: Alfredo Castro, Gael Garcia Bernal
Origin: Chile
Subtitles: Yes

In 1988, in an effort to extend and legitimize its rule, the Chilean military junta announced it would hold a plebiscite to get the people’s permission to stay in power. Despite being given 15 minutes a day to plead its case on television, the anti-Pinochet opposition was divided and without a clear message. Enter Rene Saavedra (an excellent Gael García Bernal), an ad man who, after a career pushing soft drinks and soap, sets out to sell Chileans on democracy and freedom. Winner of the top prize in this year’s Directors’ Fortnight in Cannes, No is little short of a miracle: shooting on U-matic video tape to give the film the look of the Eighties, Pablo Larraín (Tony Manero, Post Mortem) has created a smart, funny and totally engrossing political thriller with a powerful resonance for our times. NYFF


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