14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
rich moving film about humanity,
This review is from: Before Night Falls  [DVD] (DVD)
Having just watched this for the second time in a month, after having first taped it to help with my spanish studies (and because of the added bonus of Johnny Depp being in it!), it is one of my favourite films. I hadn't heard of Reinaldo Arenas previously, but the absolutely perfect performance that Javier Bardem gives, and the beautiful directing of this film, the production, the music, the colourfulness, Johnny Depp and Sean Penn's cameos, the clips of a previously banned film as the credits roll ... all of it tells the most touching story, contrasting the abuse of human rights with a very touching humanity.
The times when the pace of the film slows I found to be most effective in making you care even more, and feel much closer to, Reinaldo, almost as if the film had gone into real time and you suddenly realised you were almost in the room with the characters, and at their most vulnerable time. The slowing of the pace happens occasionally, but most of all as Reinaldo's health is deteriorating; as with the whole of the film, this is impeccably handled. This film's had me in tears both times, near the end, and I don't easily cry at anything! Amazing movie, powerful and well worth seeing again and again. One of the most human films I can recall seeing.