Review: ‘End’

Bare-bones narrative about three disaffected youngsters who set out to accomplish a common goal.

There’s an inevitable finality to the slow-moving proceedings in “End,” Spanish writer-helmer Luis Sampieri’s bare-bones narrative about three disaffected youngsters who set out to accomplish a common goal in the wind-swept hinterland of Barcelona. Docu-like take on the protags’ first and probably only meeting is part enigma, part cautionary tale, though the pic’s true subject — contempo kids’ inability to connect on a human level in a computerized world — is kept so far offscreen it might as well have been in another movie. Fests will dig “End,” but there’s little chance of crossover appeal.

Pic never spells out what the trio is prepping or how they know each other. When cocky yet meticulous teen Iker (Sergi Gibert) first meets the ominously nicknamed “Mishima” (Ramia Chaoui) in person, he’s pissed off that she turns out to be a Muslim and a girl, suggesting they probably met online. Together with sullen Ana (Irene Garres), they prepare for what’s coming, mostly in silence. Editing is frequently dictated by wide establishing shots and simple shot/reverse-shot rhythms; sound editing seemed unfinished at projection caught. Sparingly used score is often closer to noise than music.

End

Spain

Production

A Cierzo Films, LS Producciones presentation and production. Produced by Luis Sampieri, Victor Fornies. Directed, written by Luis Sampieri.

Crew

Camera (color, HD/DV), Federico Juarez; editor, Alex Blanzaco; music, Tamir Jordi Satorra, Alejandro Elias; art director, Joel Lozano. Original title: Fin. Spanish, Arabic dialogue. Reviewed at Berlin Film Festival (Forum), Feb. 16, 2010. Running time: 87 MIN.

With

Sergi Gibert, Ramia Chaoui, Irene Garres.

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