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Externo film review

★★★★

Directed by: Jonathan Taub, Leandro Taub

Written by: Leandro Taub

Starring: Leandro Taub, Elizabeth Ehrlich, Christian Bargados

 
Poster for Externo showing animation.
Poster for Externo

A powerful businessman and his ways of doing business and dealing with crisis.


Operating like a documentary, this feature follows Joseph (Taub) as he gives advice regarding success in business and talks about who he is, his achievements, how he handles business. Then he has to deal with a global threat. Generally, this unusual film focuses on the life of an eccentric individual and his views on life and it explores themes of business, money and power.


There isn't much of a narrative. This multi-award winning movie is separated into chapters and during the majority of its duration, the feature feels like a lecture about business. Things start to become tense as Joseph attempts to resolve acts of terrorism and a threat that might lead to a Third World War.


Most of the time Joseph is by himself, walking through rundown buildings and talks on his phone with acquaintances about work. He comes across as an intelligent and determined individual and also a bit awkward. There are also sequences that show him speaking to and interacting with a woman (Ehrlich) inside a room with limited lighting and scenes where he is doing woodwork inside another darkened room.


The filmmakers make extensive uses of voice-over, utilizing the voice of Joseph and an unseen man. There is also the voice of a reporter, as they announce events unfold during fictional news reports.


Throughout, texts appear that either announce the beginning of a new chapter, highlight significant facts or are the exact words the reporter is saying.


The film has some rather surreal and awkward moments that involve Joseph's behavior, the way he interacts with the woman and a sequence during which the movie turns into a music video, with him dancing in slow motion.


Externo is an unusual piece of work and offers an experience into the world of business and power and is filled with drama and tension. With great performances by Taub and Ehrlich, a beautiful score and wonderful cinematography, it is an achievement worthy of praise and recognition.

 

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