The Snail’s Strategy

(COLOMBIAN) A Caracol TV/FOCINE/Crear TV/Prods. Fotograma/EMME production. Produced, directed by Sergio Cabrera. Executive producer, Salvatore Basile, Sandro Silvestri. Screenplay, Humberto Dorado, based on a script by Cabrera, Ramon Jimeno. Camera (color), Carlos Congote; editor, Manuel Navia, Nicholas Wenworth; music, German Arrieta. Reviewed at Cartagena Film Festival, Colombia, March 9, 1994. (Also in Sundance Film Festival.) Running time: 116 MIN.

(COLOMBIAN) A Caracol TV/FOCINE/Crear TV/Prods. Fotograma/EMME production. Produced, directed by Sergio Cabrera. Executive producer, Salvatore Basile, Sandro Silvestri. Screenplay, Humberto Dorado, based on a script by Cabrera, Ramon Jimeno. Camera (color), Carlos Congote; editor, Manuel Navia, Nicholas Wenworth; music, German Arrieta. Reviewed at Cartagena Film Festival, Colombia, March 9, 1994. (Also in Sundance Film Festival.) Running time: 116 MIN.

With: Frank Ramirez, Humberto Dorado, Florina Lemaitre, Gustavo Angarita, Vicky Hernandez, Edgardo Roman, Fausto Cabrera, Salvatore Basile, Victor Mallarino.

This second feature by Sergio Cabrera is rife with domestic concerns, including violence, bureaucracy and misuse of power, balanced by a large cast of quirky characters who band together in their fight for justice. The film is Colombia’s largest national hit, having drawn almost double the attendance of “Jurassic Park.”

An ensemble comedy, “The Snail’s Strategy” takes pokes at official corruption in Colombia, and very few people are spared — not politicians, the police, lawyers, judges or the rich.

At the beginning of the century, large mansions in the center of Bogota were abandoned by the wealthy as the city grew northward. These buildings were occupied by squatters, and law stipulates that, after being unclaimed for a determined period, ownership passes into the hands of the residents.

Told in flashback, pic relates the case of the Olive house, a rambling complex of 48 rooms popularly known as “The Coop.” When the former owner tries to reclaim the building, the tenants resist.

A lawyer manages to delay eviction while an old theatrical stage manager comes up with a strategy: Using a series of pulleys and levers, the tenants dismantle the building piece by piece until only the facade remains.

As the many residents interact to carry out their strategy, their individual idiosyncrasies are laid bare. On the other side are the villains, who manipulate the law, sometimes violently, for their own ends. Cabrera has a good feeling for directing actors and manages to infuse this complex microcosm of Colombian society with dramatic life.

The Snail's Strategy

More Film

  • (L to R) Owen (CHRIS PRATT),

    'Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom' Tops $700 Million Worldwide

    (COLOMBIAN) A Caracol TV/FOCINE/Crear TV/Prods. Fotograma/EMME production. Produced, directed by Sergio Cabrera. Executive producer, Salvatore Basile, Sandro Silvestri. Screenplay, Humberto Dorado, based on a script by Cabrera, Ramon Jimeno. Camera (color), Carlos Congote; editor, Manuel Navia, Nicholas Wenworth; music, German Arrieta. Reviewed at Cartagena Film Festival, Colombia, March 9, 1994. (Also in Sundance Film Festival.) […]

  • No Merchandising. Editorial Use Only. No

    'Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom' Feasts on $150 Million Opening

    (COLOMBIAN) A Caracol TV/FOCINE/Crear TV/Prods. Fotograma/EMME production. Produced, directed by Sergio Cabrera. Executive producer, Salvatore Basile, Sandro Silvestri. Screenplay, Humberto Dorado, based on a script by Cabrera, Ramon Jimeno. Camera (color), Carlos Congote; editor, Manuel Navia, Nicholas Wenworth; music, German Arrieta. Reviewed at Cartagena Film Festival, Colombia, March 9, 1994. (Also in Sundance Film Festival.) […]

  • NANTUCKET, MA - JUNE 23: (L-R)

    How Long Will TV and Film's Boom Market for Female Stories Last?

    (COLOMBIAN) A Caracol TV/FOCINE/Crear TV/Prods. Fotograma/EMME production. Produced, directed by Sergio Cabrera. Executive producer, Salvatore Basile, Sandro Silvestri. Screenplay, Humberto Dorado, based on a script by Cabrera, Ramon Jimeno. Camera (color), Carlos Congote; editor, Manuel Navia, Nicholas Wenworth; music, German Arrieta. Reviewed at Cartagena Film Festival, Colombia, March 9, 1994. (Also in Sundance Film Festival.) […]

  • 'Ideal Home' Review: Steve Coogan, Paul

    Film Review: 'Ideal Home'

    (COLOMBIAN) A Caracol TV/FOCINE/Crear TV/Prods. Fotograma/EMME production. Produced, directed by Sergio Cabrera. Executive producer, Salvatore Basile, Sandro Silvestri. Screenplay, Humberto Dorado, based on a script by Cabrera, Ramon Jimeno. Camera (color), Carlos Congote; editor, Manuel Navia, Nicholas Wenworth; music, German Arrieta. Reviewed at Cartagena Film Festival, Colombia, March 9, 1994. (Also in Sundance Film Festival.) […]

  • 'Calibre' Review: A Terrific, Intensely Terrifying

    Edinburgh Film Review: 'Calibre'

    (COLOMBIAN) A Caracol TV/FOCINE/Crear TV/Prods. Fotograma/EMME production. Produced, directed by Sergio Cabrera. Executive producer, Salvatore Basile, Sandro Silvestri. Screenplay, Humberto Dorado, based on a script by Cabrera, Ramon Jimeno. Camera (color), Carlos Congote; editor, Manuel Navia, Nicholas Wenworth; music, German Arrieta. Reviewed at Cartagena Film Festival, Colombia, March 9, 1994. (Also in Sundance Film Festival.) […]

  • CHRIS PRATT stars as Owen in

    Box Office: 'Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom' Gnaws on $144 Million Debut Weekend

    (COLOMBIAN) A Caracol TV/FOCINE/Crear TV/Prods. Fotograma/EMME production. Produced, directed by Sergio Cabrera. Executive producer, Salvatore Basile, Sandro Silvestri. Screenplay, Humberto Dorado, based on a script by Cabrera, Ramon Jimeno. Camera (color), Carlos Congote; editor, Manuel Navia, Nicholas Wenworth; music, German Arrieta. Reviewed at Cartagena Film Festival, Colombia, March 9, 1994. (Also in Sundance Film Festival.) […]

  • Leung Chiu-wai

    Tony Leung Breaks With Wong Kar-wai’s Jettone (Reports)

    (COLOMBIAN) A Caracol TV/FOCINE/Crear TV/Prods. Fotograma/EMME production. Produced, directed by Sergio Cabrera. Executive producer, Salvatore Basile, Sandro Silvestri. Screenplay, Humberto Dorado, based on a script by Cabrera, Ramon Jimeno. Camera (color), Carlos Congote; editor, Manuel Navia, Nicholas Wenworth; music, German Arrieta. Reviewed at Cartagena Film Festival, Colombia, March 9, 1994. (Also in Sundance Film Festival.) […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content