“This city is very intense: you’ve got to look for your own way, and make the most of it.”
A Spanish photographer named Gustavo (Antonio Resines) spends the summer in New York, where he struggles to learn English, tries to sell his work to a big-name magazine, and woos a beautiful Spanish expatriate (Beatriz Perez Porro).
Writer/director Fernando Colomo clearly based much of this semi-autobiographical film on his own experiences as a visitor in the United States. He perfectly captures the frustration of not being able to understand or speak the language around you, and of expats’ tendency to latch on to those few who do. Yet the story itself fails to compel, mostly because Gustavo’s stubborn insistence on trying to sell his photos of New York buildings (which, by the way, we never see) doesn’t make any sense; when told very gently yet directly that the kind of work he’s created has already been done, he doesn’t seem to take the hint. Similarly, he continues to pursue a young woman (Porro) who’s never expressed any interest in him. Worst of all, however, is the film’s ending, which is enormously unsatisfying. Overall, this one is a disappointment.
Redeeming Qualities and Moments:
- An honest depiction of the language difficulties faced by immigrants and expatriates in America