Often incomprehensible and generally indescribable, Sergio Caballero's feature debut, "Finisterrae," certainly has a sense of humor, but how much is meant to be taken seriously?
Often incomprehensible and generally indescribable, Sergio Caballero’s feature debut, “Finisterrae,” certainly has a sense of humor, but how much is meant to be taken seriously? Two Russian-speaking (dubbed) ghosts, in basic Halloween attire of white sheets with blacked-out eye holes, journey to Santiago de Compostela in the hopes of rejoining the living. Lensing by Eduard Grau (“A Single Man”) looks incongruously splendid when paired with this bewildering procession of oddities. Rotterdam’s Tiger prize was surely awarded out of sheer perversity, yet there’s something undeniably compelling about so much bizarreness. Cult status is likely.
Tired of being ghosts, two spirits determine to “consult the oracle of Garrel” (Philippe presumably, not Louis) somewhere beyond Santiago. With one occasionally on horseback or in a wheelchair, and the other carrying a wind sock, they progress through an attractive landscape and encounter a lieder-singing hippie, a forest full of plastic ears whispering in Catalan and, most amusingly, a flashback to bad 1980s Catalan video art. Is “Finisterrae” merely poking fun at rarefied art cinema, or is it a quirky homage? Both interpretations are possible, so best not to question and just enjoy the visuals.