Los Hongos

Los Hongos.jpg

Length: 1h 43min
Genre: Drama
Release Date: 25 September 2014 (Colombia)
Director: Oscar Ruiz Navia
Writers: César Augusto Acevedo, Oscar Ruiz Navia
Stars: Jovan Alexis Marquinez, Calvin Buenaventura, Atala Estrada

See trailer on YouTube: LOS HONGOS Trailer | Festival 2014

Every night after construction work, Ras, son of Maria, who migrated to the city from the Pacific Jungle makes graffiti on different walls of his neighborhood in the east of Cali. Ras hasn't slept and is starting to daydream. Maria worries that someone has bewitched him and he will end up insane. One day Ras loses his job because he stole cans of paint with which he has been doing a huge mural on the lot next to his house. He crosses the city looking for Calvin, another young graffiti artist and together they go aimlessly through the city, like those who want to get lost and never return.

Critics of the movie (click text to open full movie critic website):

  1. Austin Film Society: "Los hongos is a film about crime and punishment, yes, but it's also about family and friendship, social activism, racial and sexual tensions, generation gaps, about vastly different cultural ways of processing poverty and uncertainty and political angst."
  2. Cinebaguette.com: "Creo que vale la pena ver porque propone algo diferente, pero no si se quiere encontrar una historia comprensible, tradicional, simple y llana."
  3. Critic.de: "Das Herz von Los Hongos ist eine jugendliche Freundschaft, die selbstverständlich und deshalb bedingungslos erscheint."
  4. El Espectador Imaginario: "En conclusión, en esta película del colombiano Oscar Ruiz Navia, nos encontramos ante un film de muy buenas intenciones, con aciertos evidentes, pero lastrado por un ritmo a ratos inadecuado, que termina por abatir en algunas escenas al espectador por la insistencia en su reiteración en el tiempo cinematográfico."
  5. Film Dreams: "La película es lineal, y hay pocos giros, pero hay dos que sorprenden. Se introduce el asunto de una relación entre Calvin y María, y está muy bien tratado sin llegar a aburrir.
  6. Kalafudra's Stuff: "The film is a good watch despite – or maybe because – of it, with many great details (how I loved the grandma’s house!) and two interesting, well-acted main characters."
  7. Maglomaniac: "The palm tree and laugh filled frames make the viewer sorry when the film is over. It’s like we could just watch Ras and Calvin go on and on, forever."
  8.  Shock.co: "El segundo largometraje en la carrera del prometedor cineasta caleño de 32 años Óscar Ruiz Navia, es un documento de nuestros tiempos, una historia que muestra cómo los jóvenes de esta generación conviven y se nutren de la tradición, de la casa de la familia, pero a la vez se preguntan por lo que pasa en el mundo, por buscar nuevos mecanismos de expresión a través de la cultura."
  9.  Slant Magazine: "Instead of genuinely probing how ideals fare when put to the test, Los Hongos is content to just fall back into its previous, now oddly compromised groove, shuffling its way through a third act whose repeated, largely unnecessary attempts to tie up loose threads make scene after scene feel like the last."
  10. PopOptiq: "Like a love letter to his hometown, Oscar Ruiz Navia’s second feature, Los Hongos, provides a snapshot of present-day Colombia, exploring issues of religion, love, art and class through the unclouded eyes of the young protagonists."
  11. The Society for Film: "Los Hongos starts small, draws you in with subtle and surprising imagery, fascinating characters, entrancing music and rich cinematography. Gradually and patiently the film opens up, flowering in the final scene, with a beautiful and memorable cinematic moment. One of the most original and captivating films of the year."
  12. Variety: "Less self-consciously “arty” than his debut, this is a generally appealing mix of docu-realism with impressionistic scenes (the helmer calls it a “documentary dream”), though its didactic passages highlighting political problems stop the action cold, and the final section throws narrative discipline out the window. Still, the mix largely works, and will see heavy traction via fest rotation."
  13. Way Too Indie: "Los Hongos is not without flaws. Its political commentary is underdeveloped, and a lack of narrative structure gives off a frustrating level of ambiguity and aimlessness at times. Yet Navia’s observations on life are poignant, and Los Hongos shows promise from a talented director."
  14. Chris Knipp: "Los Hongos shows how widespread hip hop culture is, the skateboarding, the gliders, the graffiti, the music mixing punk, ska, rap, and other elements, and the universal Facebook culture of left and revolutionary youth sentiment. Ruiz Navia does not try to go into much depth, and his film can't compare with the hipness and complexity of such Latin American youth films as Alexis Dos Santos's Glue or José Manuel (Che)Sandoval's Te creís la más linda pero es la mas puta, or on an even higher level of cinematic sophistication the films of Fernando Eimbcke and Gerardo Naranjo. But it looks directly at local society and youth culture in a documentary manner in ways they perhaps don't."
Ylös / Up