Who doesn’t love a good film noir? Murder, debauchery, intrigue, a combination that would make the likes of Alfred Hitchcock and Humphrey Bogart proud. Body Heat, directed by Lawrence Kasdan, features those aspects but explores the question of what a man would do under the false pretenses of love and attraction. The film stars William Hurt and Kathleen Turner in the main roles, with a supporting cast of Ted Danson, an almost unrecognizable Mickey Rourke, T.A. Preston, and Richard Crenna. The film begins during the start of a massive Florida heat wave that sets the whole town ablaze with complaints. Ned Racine (Hurt) a inexperienced lawyer starts an affair with Matty Walker (Turner) the wife of Edmund Walker (Crenna) a rich businessman. One thing leads to another, and before Racine knows it, he’s planning to murder Edmund. Racine is motivated not only by Matty’s plea but the thought of having Matty and a whole slew of cash all to himself.
Body Heat is Kasdan’s first attempt at a director, with previous screenwriting credits including those for Raiders of the Lost Arc and Star Wars: Episode V and VI. His directorial debut’s an obvious departure from watching Luke Skywalker and gang travel around the universe to Indiana Jones fighting Nazi’s over the safety of the coveted Arc. Throughout Body Heat, I couldn’t stop thinking about Billy Wilder’s film noir Double Indemnity. From Matty’s motivations, her sporting the same white dress worn by Barbara Stanwyck, to the identical golden locks – there were far too many similarities, even in the plot. Both women wanted their possessive rich husbands dead, and thought it would be easier for their lovers to do the deed. Racine stumbles into the same trap that Fred MacMurray’s character gets himself into – falling in love with a golden haired goddess and discovering she’s more like medusa than anything else.
The increasing Florida heat plays a supporting character within itself. The heat undoubtedly is what brings everyone together. It pushes all the characters to do drastic things, from having affairs to committing murders, who knows what will happen when the temperature rises? As seen in the film Do the Right Thing, the heat causes a small block in Brooklyn to go against each other in the most violent of ways, nearly burning the section down by the end of the film. Every time the temperature is mentioned in Body Heat, the tensions rise. The opening scene of the film shows a house on fire a few miles from Racine’s house, that constant flame is reignited during two other pivotal moments in the film – at the middle, when Racine commits his first and only crime and the end, where one plot twist after another results in a deadly explosion.
Film noir is my favorite genre or form of expression in film, the term is different with everyone. One of my favorite aspects of Body Heat is the plot. The narrative has to be dragged on and a little confusing to muster the first time to be a successful film noir. The characters and the plot twists have to be just as ridiculous and unexpected as the situations they create. I felt that Body Heat did film noir justice – taking what the pioneers of film in the 40s and 50s did with it and pushing it a little further, almost embracing the lack of production code of the more modern age with more scenes focused on sexuality.
What made the plot so strong and compelling were the performances of Hurt and Turner. The two pushed the plot almost seamlessly along as I watched them move closer and closer to the inevitable train wreck at the end.
Fargo is a crime drama directed by the Coen Brothers and was released in 1996. The film stars Frances McDormand in the leading role, with a supporting cast featuring William H. Macy, Steve Buscemi, Peter Stormare, and Harve Presnell. The film begins with car salesman Jerry Lundegaard (Macy) seeking out two sketchy criminals, Carl Showalter (Buscemi) and Gaear Grimsrud (Stormare), for a bizarre plan that involves kidnapping his wife for an even more ridiculous ransom of $80,000. The main motivation behind the kidnapping is that Lundegaard’s wife is the daughter of a rich man who continues to ignore Lundegaard whenever it comes to anything financial. Unbeknownst to the criminals, Lundegaard comes up with a scheme to request more ransom, that he’ll later use for his own gain. It is soon discovered that Lundegaard is in some serious financial troubles; in hopes of making it rich with a real estate deal, Lundegaard has been forging loans from his dealership to raise money. After Showalter and Grimsrud kidnap Lundegaard’s wife, a series of unlucky events simultaneously follow. The criminals accidentally start a trail of blood that eventually involves pregnant police chief Marge Gunderson (McDormand) to investigate the killings. Her tenacity and detective skills lead her to unravel a plethora of crimes that catch up with Lundegaard and later ends with victims being disposed most barbarically through a wood chipper.
Fargo is the Coen Brother’s sixth film and yet it’s strikingly similar to some of the other films in their careers. The level of violence, suspense, combined with a clever use of satire and comedy are reminiscent of Raising Arizona, Barton Fink, The Big Lebowski, and even A Serious Man. The pacing in Fargo starts off slow as a small town would in the early mornings – the audience soon gets accustomed to the familiarity of the atmosphere until something horrible goes wrong that leads the rest of the film spiraling out of control. The same can be said for all the films listed above, most especially Barton Fink, where a screenwriter living in a Hollywood motel soon discovers that the land of opportunity wasn’t what it was cracked up to be. A good instance of satire in Fargo is the oblivious male police officers apart of the small town where Marge practically solves the complicated crimes on her own, a la Sherlock Holmes. The use of satire in Fargo is similar to the political and Hollywood satire in Bartin Fink and even the blatant satire of Judaism in A Serious Man. It’s also similar to Breaking Bad due to the fact that the pathway to hell is paved with good intentions. Lundegaard’s only motivation for wanting to kidnap his wife was to get the money that will finally make him a successful man, where he can provide for his wife and be respected by his father-in-law. As proven throughout the five seasons of Breaking Bad, everything that can go wrong, most certainly will.
One of my favorite aspects about Fargo is the use of the setting. Almost all of the scenes that take place in the exterior are surrounded by cold, dark, and overall unpleasant weather. It’s the middle of winter in Minnesota, there is snow everywhere, and practically no one is on the roads. That alone creates a sense of isolation and yet gives an impression that the events that take place in this film are being watched closely, as if from a snow globe. That snow globe effect is created with the use of long shots by the Coen Brothers.
One of the first scenes of the film is when Lundegaard is driving to the bar to meet the criminals. A long shot is used to film Lundegaard and his appearance seems to be miniscule compared to the world around. Another important note worth mentioning is that at the beginning of the film it states that Fargo is “inspired by true events.” It is later discovered that these events are false. I was confused as to why the Coen Brothers would put this at the beginning of their film but then quickly realized it was to help add a layer of believability to this world and the characters in it. Almost all of the events in this film are absurd and there is a level of dedication given from the audience when accepting the fact that everyone is capable of breaking the law. Whether it’s with murder, stealing money, or just plain lying – everything is relatable and stating it’s based on true events gets the audience invested. I certainly was.
I’ve seen Fargo many times. My first viewing was when I was a child, and I realize this film is one of the many I should’ve avoided, along with Jaws and Alien. Perhaps watching a man struggle as he tries to shove a man through a wood chipper wasn’t the best thing for a child to watch let alone some other scenes throughout this film. I love how the Coen Brothers flawlessly blended a series of unfortunate events with different storytelling techniques. Even at the most intense moments of the film it’s bursting with hilarious moments due to the dialogue and performances. This film wouldn’t be what it is without McDormand, Macy, Buscemi, Presnell, and the rest of the cast. Finally, the stunning score by Carter Burwell paired with the bleakness of the surroundings and tragic events that slowly unfold throughout the story make Fargo one of the Coen Brothers best films.
Strangers on a Train is a psychological thriller directed by Alfred Hitchcock and was released in 1951. The film stars Farley Granger and Robert Walker, with a supporting cast featuring Ruth Roman, Patricia Hitchcock, Leo G. Carroll, and Kasey Rogers. The film begins innocently enough when tennis player Guy Haines (Granger) and Bruno Antony (Walker) meet accidentally on a train.
After a couple of lunchtime drinks, the two somehow find themselves discussing their hatred for two different individuals in their lives. Bruno is fighting for a divorce from his cheating wife Miriam (Rogers) to marry Anne Morton (Roman). Bruno has always carried a lifelong hatred for his father. This motivates Bruno to unveil his master plan for the perfect murder: they each kill the individual the other no longer wants in their life. Since the two are strangers and by criss-crossing the murders, Bruno explains it’s a relatively simple crime. Guy immediately disregards Bruno’s plan, thinking it’s a joke, and bids him adieu. Not long after they separate, Bruno upholds his part of the bargain by disposing of Miriam. With the police on Guy’s tail after Miriam’s murder, he refuses to kill Bruno’s father – while continuously threatening Bruno that he’ll go to the police. The rest of the film is a cat and mouse chase as Guy tries to clear his name and escape the ominous wrath of Bruno.
Strangers on a Train comes from the middle of Hitchcock’s repertoire, though sometimes this film is overlooked due to the success of his later films. Strangers on a Train was made after Rebecca, Rope, Suspicion, and Shadow of a Doubt. These films all came long before Psycho, The Birds, Vertigo, and North by Northwest. What Strangers on a Train has in common with all the films mentioned is the masterful and often simple use of suspense. Strangers on a Train is more of a psychological thriller; there isn’t a level of mystery in this film as in Shadow of a Doubt or Suspicion due to the audience knowing the horrors that Bruno is capable of but there is never any lack of tension throughout the film. Not only does Bruno creep into the subconscious of Guy but his constant reappearances throughout the film serve as a representation of the boogeyman. Walker’s portrayal of Bruno was reminiscent of Robert Mitchum’s performance in Night of the Hunter.
No matter where Guy went, Bruno wasn’t far behind. That is executed the best in a scene when Guy is walking along one of the monuments in Washington, D.C. As Guy gazes up, it cuts to an eerie shot of Bruno standing on the isolated steps of a monument, carefully watching Guy. It’s with those simplistic shots that make this film so perfect. They add another later to the creepiness of Bruno, which makes him more threatening in the end; forever a looming presence in Guy’s life.
This film focuses on many things but one of the most prominent is the use of criss-crossing in terms of what parallels they lead to. Criss-crossing is only brought up towards the beginning of the film when Bruno initially states his plans to Guy. It continues throughout the whole film through the editing and visuals. The obvious parallels are between Guy and Bruno; the protagonist vs. the antagonist. A great scene that shows their parallels is towards the end. Guy is playing as hard as he can to win a tennis match while Bruno is on the way to the carnival to plant evidence that proves Guy murdered his wife, even though it was obviously Bruno who committed the crime. With each swing of the tennis racket, it jump cuts to Bruno sitting on the train; this goes back and forth for a good five minutes as Guy continues playing and Bruno gets closer to his destination. The tension heightens with each cut; a good example of the struggle between good and evil. During that whole scene, there are cuts that parallel Guy with Bruno through words and actions. Guy asks what time it is, and there’s an immediate cut to Bruno checking his watch as he steps off the train. Hitchcock uses these editing techniques to crosscut between Guy and Bruno at numerous points throughout the film to further show their different personalities. Another scene that includes this editing technique is when Guy is in a phone booth speaking with Anne about Miriam’s reluctance to a divorce and screams, “I could strangle her!” The next scene is with Bruno, as he follows Miriam to the carnival, where he later plans to stranger her. Another parallel that can be attributed to the editing is two of the supporting characters wearing glasses. Miriam and Barbara Morton (Hitchcock) wear identical glasses throughout the film. When Bruno is strangling Miriam at the carnival, the murder is viewed through Miriam’s fallen glasses. Barbara also sports similar glasses and is often confused as Miriam whenever Bruno is on screen. Later in the film, during a party, Bruno coincidentally has his hands around a woman’s neck to prove a point about murder when he catches Barbara watching him. There is a close-up on Barbara but the main focus is her glasses; they trigger a conditional response to when Bruno murdered Miriam.
Strangers on a Train is my favorite Hitchcock film. I’ve seen it numerous times but never in a classroom setting. It never fails, every time I watch this film I learn something new about the characters or notice new things about the way Hitchcock shot the film. One of the reasons why this film is my favorite is because of how Hitchcock chose to tell the story through the visuals. There are several moments in this film where the visuals are at their best. The most notable scene is leading up and during Miriam’s murder. As the camera follows Bruno as he stalks Miriam through the carnival, there is a sense of impending doom. That moment when I’m watching Bruno murder Miriam through her glasses forever changed the way I look at cinema; that is also the moment when I knew I wanted to be a director.
That is just a hint of how this film is loaded with different possibilities when it comes to storytelling. Another important scene that proves Hitchcock’s brilliance at telling stories visually is during the tennis match. As Guy is waiting to play the match of his lifetime, he gazes up to the stands and immediately spots Bruno.
The people on the benches are moving their heads back and forth as they watch the match and the only head not moving is Bruno’s. He stares at Guy as the camera moves closer to him. The shot was both eerie and inspiring; such a simple way to show a villains power. It is also safe to say that I will never look at a merry-go-round the same ever again.
Last Year at Marienbad is a film directed by Alain Resnais and was made in 1961, though at points it felt like a film coming from the 1930s-1940s, in the direction of Jean Renoir. To be honest, I’m still not sure what this film was about. Apparently it focused on a man and his mad attempt to prove to a woman whether or not they met a year ago, in you guessed it, Marienbad. I always have an open mind to films, ranging from all types of genres and styles, but this one just didn’t work for me. It wasn’t the fact that it was too avant-garde or didn’t make sense, I was just bored with the overall execution of it. For an hour and thirty minutes, I was waiting for something to happen. ANYTHING. The only thing that happened were characters walking aimlessly down hallways and stairs, repeating the same dialogue consecutively, panning shots of corridors, the same casino game in every other scene, characters suddenly freezing in mid-sentence, and jarring direction and editing. There was no narrative, no main protagonist - it was all just very dull and repetitive. There were moments during the film where I literally groaned because it was unending. The acting was also aggravating - it was exaggerated and way too theatrical for my taste.
I was a little shocked at myself for not enjoying it because most films I love are abstract or experimental in some ways. For example: Eraserhead. I’m also not quite sure what in Gods name happens during moments of that film, but lots of interesting and sick things occur that keep me interested. I was constantly intrigued due to how David Lynch wrote and shot the film (but this is for an entirely different post).
What I did enjoy about Last Year at Marienbad was that there were moments when it felt like a surrealist painting coming to life - most notably a scene taking place in the garden reminiscent of the opening credits from Melancholia. The characters were frozen in time, staged positions, with their shadows growing - as if about to take up the screen.
There were also some interesting shots focusing on a statue - though I didn’t think that related to anything. The conversation went on throughout the rest of the film about what the statue depicts.
In a way I can see how this film distorts the differences between dreams, reality, and memories. Obviously the use of deja-vu with the continuous dialogue, shots, and actions. I want to say that perhaps this whole film is supposed to be a dream - those rare dreams that one might have almost every night or throughout ones life. Those dreams that perplex and make one think about their true meanings.
I’d like to re-watch this film in the future. Maybe I didn’t watch it at the right moment in my life to enjoy it as others have. As with all films, I respected it.
First day of spring semester, not the best way to start it off. My first class, Film History II showcased the worst professor I think I’ll ever have. He is incredibly pretentious, and I have him twice this semester, again for Film Documentary. What am I to do? Drop both classes? Students I know are dropping his class like flies and though I wish I could…I’m going to stick through it. In both classes there’s only a midterm paper and final essay, with other small assignments thrown in. I think I’m a good writer. No matter how tough or frustrating the topic, I think I can get a fair grade. The worst I could get is a C. Not that bad, in my opinion.
I’ve been in tougher situations. One semester I took a pre-calculus class where I could barely understand a word the professor was saying; mainly due to his outrageous asian accent, but let’s not forget about the complexities of math all together. I thought about dropping the class, finding an easier math class but I didn’t want to give up. Instead I studied harder, did all my homework, never skipped, and I ended up passing with a remarkable C.
Just because this professor may have one of the biggest egos I’ve ever seen, shows films that may be more pretentious than him (we started the class watching Last Year at Marienbad…I will write about that later, but literally nothing happened for an hour and thirty minutes), then asks his students about their opinions one by one as he then proceeds to use his own experience and opinions against them; doesn’t mean that I should drop the class. I don’t admire how he calls on students and asks them what they thought about the film either, mainly because I’m extremely shy and not good at thinking on the spot when it comes to analytical questions. If I don’t raise my hand, then please don’t pick on me! I’ve got to take time to think about my answers. I also don’t think that’s a lecture at all - it’s just a man asking students their opinions and then belittling them.
I’m not going to quit though - no matter how many times I’ll embarrass myself every week during the semester. Nothing will take away my passion for cinema. Despite the professor being harsh, not making any sense, and my anxieties skyrocketing, I’m going to stick through it. I am afraid though. I’m not going to like every person I meet in life, so why drop out or hide away just because they’re going to be a struggle? This semester is going to be a challenge academically, spiritually, and test the strengths of my time management skills all together.
Hello all! New year, new posts. I can’t believe I start a new semester tomorrow. EEK.
I’ve been rather lazy this Christmas break, obviously not writing nearly as much as I’d hoped BUT this semester I’m taking three different writing classes: cinema criticism writing, writing for film and TV, and theory and practice of creative writing. Not to mention three other film classes that are bound to have me writing papers, essays, and random assignments - so please stay tuned!
I also plan to write more reviews and creative things. SO far (counting this entry) I have 17 posts on this here blog - this is definitely the longest and most I’ve used of a writing blog. Three cheers for mediocre productivity!
Another important aspect I recently decided to research in His Girl Friday is the use of smoking throughout the film. I’ve been watching classic films since I was a child, and I’ve always noticed that in scene after scene - almost ALL the characters are lighting up cigarettes. I figured this would be an enjoyable topic to research regarding the film, and I dug up some interesting facts:
Though smoking is only indicated at the start of the scene, when Hildy asks Burns for a cigarette and then proceeds to light it; smoking still holds a major dominance not only throughout the rest of His Girl Friday but with most classic Hollywood films.
Smoking has always been the norm but during the 1930s and 1940s, smoking reached its peak in popularity. Despite all the ads and rising health concerns from citizens and doctors themselves (most of whom smoked in their offices while seeing patients) that didn’t stop the consumers from continually purchasing the numerous products - the most popular being Camels.
One interesting fact I found while researching certain moments in history regarding cigarettes was the negative appeal it had on women. A woman that was seen smoking was usually treated unfairly; often looked down on since most individuals thought smoking to be a disgusting habit. That soon changed when advertising agencies started catching the women’s attention. Soon people believed smoking to symbolize freedom, beauty, and equality. Perhaps that’s why the writer decided to have Hildy smoking a cigarette in the scene? To make it evident that Hily wanted her freedom and was ready to let Burns know her true intentions?
According to Greg Brian from Yahoo news, “In the 1940’s you’d see more smoking in movies than probably any other decade…you can guarantee just about every film made in the 1940’s other than period pieces had at least a dozen scenes of someone smoking a cigarette…the most common genres seen with smoking were generally romantic comedies, movies about WWII or detective Film Noirs that arrived later that decade.” Due to the constant use of cigarettes in films during that time, the filmmakers might’ve unintentionally changed the way smoking would be used and portrayed in future films.
Though there is another half of the filmmaking in the 1940s that was specifically motivated by the cigarettes and what opportunities would open up by endorsing a tobacco company. Found in one of the research studies by individuals at Stanford and at the Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education at UC San Francisco: ”During the ’30s and ’40s, two-thirds of the top 50 box office stars in Hollywood endorsed tobacco brands for advertising purposes and were paid a lot to do so. In return for the paid testimonials of their stars, the major studies benefited from ads for their movies in lucrative ‘cross over’ deals, paid for by the tobacco companies.” This goes on to prove that perhaps the use of cigarettes in film goes back longer than when it first debuted in the 1920s; motivated by something much more than merely wanting to make an artistic statement but more along the lines of a business deal. Dr. Stanton Glantz also reports, “People say smoking is part of filmmaking. It creates characters and mood. But our paper showed this was all business. Some of the people in those ads didn’t even smoke. But one side effect it had was it completely embedded smoking into the culture of Hollywood. This cultural connection drives smoking in film.”
This is part of my research for a massive assignment I’m working on in my script analysis class - one of the things I decided to research regarding His Girl Friday was the Hollywood Production Code. The scene that I’m referring to in the script is at the beginning - when Hildy meets with Burns for what she thinks is the last time to tell him that she’s getting married:
One of the most important aspects I discovered while researching His Girl Friday was the censorship that affected all motion pictures at the time of the production. The censorship went into affect during the 1930s and lasted up until the late 1960s due to the rise of television and the overall collapse of the studio system. After 1934, the new Production Code required all films to require a certificate approving its material before being released to the public; if there was something the board didn’t approve of, the film would be considered a failure and the director would have to make the necessary changes. On an approved project, before the film started that same stamp of approval was shown to the audience deeming the films viewable. The code insisted that certain acts featuring profanity, all things slanted towards sex (be it kissing for too long and too much, showing men and women in bed together, and even nudity), rape, murder, slavery, drugs, etc., were inappropriate for films.
Soon after the code was passed, the screwball comedies famous for the notorious battle of the sexes were limited due to all the restrictions that the code demanded. Those same comedies still existed but were challenged; they began playing with subtle innuendos, fast paced dialogue, and more physical humor. In fact, it is noted that it was His Girl Friday that launched a thousand ships of completely new screwball comedies in the 1940s. These comedies focused more on women and their struggles with deciding on men or their careers.
By the time His Girl Friday began filming in 1939, and when the film was released the following year in 1940, the Hollywood system had gotten used to all the restrictions set on top of them by the council. All of the famous improvisations by Cary Grant and Rosalind Russell made no one on set nervous because they had no intention in saying or doing anything inappropriate. The studios at that time were producing films like an assembly line and by then every actor and man on set could recite the requirements of the code in their sleep. Despite the negativities of the censorship, it didn’t stop these storytellers from expressing themselves; it in fact challenged them to be more creative and classy in the ways they told their stories. In the screenplay, when Earl Williams tells about having apparently shot his psychiatrist “right in the classified ads”, it gives us another example of how these writers/directors/producers were forced to “not only be cleaner but cleverer.”
A prompt for a small assignment in my script analysis class: Discuss the use of time and space in Pulp Fiction. How is time manipulated and to what end? How do the writers use descriptions of the environment to add to the narrative?
Like so many others, Tarantino is one of my favorite people alive. He has inspired me more than a lot of modern filmmakers and Pulp Fiction has a role to play in one of the many reasons I wanted to spend the rest of my life immersed in cinema.
One thing that I love about Pulp Fiction is how it manages to distort time and space to a point where it may confuse some viewers upon the first viewing but everything comes together in the end – almost seamlessly. Pulp Fiction wouldn’t be the way it is if the sequence of events were in order. Sure I’d watch it due to Tarantino’s name being attached, but it wouldn’t be unique and challenging. Time is used throughout the screenplay almost as a form of emphasis. Segments are split up, acts are rearranged, all according to the themes and often subject matter affiliated with the scenes; but most importantly, to add dramatic irony and tension. As with the first time I watched the film, to reading the screenplay for the first time this evening; there’s nothing I love more than knowing more than the characters do on screen and dealing with the anticipation of their reactions.
The details that are put into the script not only help the reader keep up with the storytelling but add Tarantino’s own style to the work. The more detail, the better; even if it doesn’t make it on screen, it makes it a more enjoyable read in any case. It adds a more personal touch and fuels the imagination more.
It’s such a shame I never got a chance to see this film on the big screen.
To be honest - at first I was a bit frustrated with the animation; mostly the character designs. It wasn’t just with the main characters, but I was a bit alarmed at the fact that some of the designs for the characters were a bit exaggerated. It was like seeing one of Picasso’s paintings (perhaps a couple of paintings from his blue period?) come to life for an hour and thirty minutes on screen. I may be the only person who sees it this way or even had a problem with the designs. It didn’t take long for me to fall in love with everything though - it’s just something to get used to while constantly swimming in the sea of 3D animation from some of the big animation studios. In the end, that’s one of the things I appreciated most about the film; the simplicity of the animation and the unique twists the director and animators applied to the surroundings. Though some designs were less than conventional, the seductive characters and the colorful atmosphere throughout the entirety of the film was bursting with life and energy. I was caught off guard numerous times at all the different city shots of Havana, New York, and Las Vegas.
Another prominent aspect about this film, that overall helped with the sleek movement, was the music; I could recognize some of the tunes and it made my heart happy. I love it when films can successfully intertwine music with the story.
My favorite part of the film was Chico’s abstract dream sequence towards the middle, when Chico and Ramón venture off to New York City. The transitions between each segment of the dream were smooth, as was the changes in music and tone. From Chico gazing at a gorgeous decked out Rita waltzing down the stairs to a cute moment where Chico plays the piano a la Casablanca and even meets up with Bogie, I never wanted it to end.
Finally, I enjoyed the love story between Chico and Rita, though that too was annoying at times. I would have loved to get more back story on both characters; there definitely could have been more character development between the two. I was never fully invested in their struggles because both characters seemed so aloof, there was never a moment of understanding or sympathy for me to have with either of them. Another narration point that irritated me was how quickly Ramón was willing to just throw Chico under the bus. Then when Chico was deported back to Havana, how did he not try to contact Rita or even Ramón? I don’t believe that for 47+ years, Chico kept his silence, especially after he was chasing Rita for the majority of the film. Lots of simple plot holes but I did get teary eyed at Chico and Rita’s reunion at the end of the film.