Cuerdas (2019), by José Luis Montesinos – Review

Strings, the debut of José Luis Montesinos in the direction, has a claw to stand out but not enough to get out of the limited parameters of the survival.

The film tells the story of Elena, a young quadriplegic who
is trapped in his farmhouse (conditioned with hundreds of ropes to move around
her) while an undesirable dog makes them pass pointers. Ninety minutes
from panic, anguish, human drama and scares to thriller and ups of
Treble musicals … The fan will be able to delight, but will not see anything new under the sun.

The character of Elena (wonderful Paula del Rio) strives to fall ill from the first minute, in a strategy of the director to make clear his misfortune. Generally this invites a distancing with the character, and that despite the accumulated tragedy (loss of the mother, accident, disability …) put his life in a situation of extreme abandonment that makes it "easy" to understand. The teenage answer is a recurrence in film and television, and is almost never on the side of the viewer's favorites. Here Paula del Río raises the level to give it some interesting nuances that, in spite of everything, we can feel it for her and we do not want the ‘man's best friend’ to hit her.

It puts a director and an actress on the front line that can give our cinema many joys in the future.

Strings has the facts of survival homeland with echoes of Stephen King and the terror of the 80s. The tape reminds Cujo from Lewis Teague or, by going to something more current, The Gerald Game. The first, evidently, by the madness of the dog that channels the moments of increasing and pressing panic. The second, being an isolated victim, trapped and in a time trial situation. The sense of suffocation while sometimes sinning unreal, is achieved. Its two referents are superior in dynamics and finishes, but Strings does not detract from a viewing of enjoyment for all acolytes of the genre.

Strings, although he tries to avoid the topics of this type of products, he gets it halfway. He does not invent gunpowder but achieves an acceptable tension for the terms in which he moves. We may not remember it in the medium term, but it puts a director and an actress on the front line that can give our cinema many joys in the future.


Synopsis An unfortunate accident leaves Elena, a young quadriplegic, incommunicado in a country house. There she only has Athos, a dog specially trained to help her. But he who should be his best friend has contracted a strange disease and has become his worst enemy.
country Spain
Address José Luis Montesinos
Script Yako Blesa, José Luis Montesinos
Music Arnau Bataller
Photography Marc Zumbach
Distribution Paula del Río, Miguel Ángel Jenner
Gender Thriller
Duration 87 min.
Original title Strings
Premiere 02/28/2020

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