Netflix movie ‘7 Prisoners’: Full Review
Manufacturer Ramin Bahrani’s fingerprints are all on Alexandre Moratto 7 prisoners, a Dickensian social realism drama set in the urban fringes of contemporary Brazil. Fans of the work of the Iranian-American director like 99 houses and White Tiger will find themselves delighted by this stinging change to the ruthlessness needed to emerge in today’s rotten and horrible economy. It’s a stinging indictment of the systems that govern upward mobility – or the lack of it – as experienced and felt through the fully human experience of protagonist Mateus (Christian Malheiros). .
Moratto, like Bahrani, found the perfect vantage point for the collapse of global business: the misperception of the middle manager. Mateus left his country house to work under contract in São Paulo with the intention of sending their support money back. He is not alone in this pursuit of prosperity, joining several other young men in pursuit of employment opportunities. The garage stripped of cars and wires is run by Luca’s iron fist (Rodrigo Santoro, familiar to non-Brazilian audiences from Really love and TV’s Pass away) provide them with work, food, shelter… along with a course on labor exploitation.
At the first sign of doubting their pay time, Luca breaks the whip and uses his draconian powers to suppress any dissidents in the ranks. He holds the purse strings and, therefore, all the power. Like a contemporary Fagin, Luca stifles their rebellious will by reminding them of their livelihood – and that of their family – he holds in their hands. Threats are both physical and psychological. And when the boys try to escape, he doesn’t hesitate to flex his muscles that the police are more on the side of business interests than justice.
While the brutality and barbarity of the opening act of 7 prisoners Possibly appearing to set the stage for a march of miserliness, Moratto had something else on Mateus’ mind. That’s when he started scaling down a bit and exposing the mechanics of the economic game. Luca seeks to maintain control of the group by pitting them against one another, convincing them that their flourishing can only come at the expense of others. Mateus joins, determining that the only way to beat the game is to join it.
He quickly realizes the benefits of complicity, is instantly given preferential treatment, and becomes lord over the very people he walks into the garage with. Before long, he even personally selected some of the workers of unknown origin for the business. The villain Luca even begins to show a different side of himself with a compliant new employee, imposing new privileges, responsibilities, and even some kindness on his apparent protector. he.
7 prisoners Not to excuse Luca, but Moretto tries to understand what prompted an old product of the slums to exercise such hostility towards these young men trying to make a fund. similar religion. As the film sheds more light on the structural dynamics of the garage’s operation, the incentive structure becomes apparent – and it rewards their unaffiliated pursuit of profit rather than human happiness. . Even Luca has a boss he has to answer to, and the feeling of possessing some amount of power in a dehumanizing system is a fascinating illusion of potentially vanishing control over the villains. one’s sense of empathy. The message is unmistakable: submit to the system to be successfully rewarded.
The city of São Paulo begins a glimmer of hope for Mateus; When he was doing repairs on the rooftop, he stared at the series of skyscrapers with wonder. But it starts to get more complicated when he learns what really powers people’s lavish lifestyles. “Look at your work, across the city,” Luca told Mateus as they drove under the tangled ropes that connect the masses. In a film defined by a solidly social realist aesthetic, Moretto breaks his own rules and indulges with an expressive montage of the city’s lifeblood framework. There is no denying the stealth exploits that make urban life come to life thanks to this sequence, an astonishing visualization of the themes brought to light by 7 prisoners. For a genre largely defined by prioritizing content over form, this metaphor marks a welcome change of pace.
While Moretto may not possess the masterful visuals or narratives of his benefactor Bahrani, the film is a notable step up from his good intentions if the debut is made in such a way. negligent Socrates (also starring Malheiros). He clearly has a knack for observing how institutions ingrained in individuals, make their decisions, and limit their dreams. But most importantly, he never loses touch with the human at the heart of the story – a focus the film lacks that seems as cold and tedious as the systems it induces. Moretto is clear about the compromises Mateus must make to survive and is compassionate enough to be able to see his entire personality through.
Marshall Shaffer is a freelance film journalist based in New York. In addition to Decider, his work has also appeared in Slashfilm, Slant, Little White Lies and many other outlets. Someday soon, everyone will realize how right he is about Spring Breakers.
https://decider.com/2021/12/01/7-prisoners-netflix-movie-review/ Netflix movie ‘7 Prisoners’: Full Review