Rent Machuca (2004)

3.9 of 5 from 104 ratings
1h 42min
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Andrés Wood's semi-autobiographical film is set in Chile in 1973, when General Pinochet's military coup seized power from President Allende's democratically elected government. It follows the unexpected friendship of two 11 year-old boys - Gonzalo, who comes from a wealthy middle class neighbourhood, and Pedro Machuca, who lives in a nearby illegal shantytown. They meet when an idealistic priest admits children from poor families to an elite private school and, as they learn about each other's very different worlds, a strong bond grows between them. But as the violent unrest in Chilean society inexorably encroaches into their lives, the boys' friendship is shaken to the core.
Featuring fine performances from its young cast, Wood's powerful and vividly realised drama is the first Chilean film to deal with this tumultuous time in the country's history.
Matías Quer, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , Alfredo Ahumada, Daniel Alcino, Jack Arama, David Arancibia, Cristóbal Aravena
Roberto Brodsky, Mamoun Hassan
Artificial Eye Film Company Ltd.
Spain, Drama
Release Date:
Run Time:
102 minutes
DVD Regions:
Region 2
Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen 1.78:1 / 16:9
  • Interview with Andres Wood
  • Theatrical trailer

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Reviews (2) of Machuca

Highly recommended - Machuca review by CP Customer

Spoiler Alert

A wonderful movie, with superb direction and acting.

0 out of 1 members found this review helpful.

A lasting friendship? - Machuca review by RhysH

Spoiler Alert

From the opening sequence of Gonzalo (Matias Quer) meticulously dressing for school in his pristine uniform to the first sight of the shanty-town kid, Pedro (Ariel Mateluna) with the hole in his jumper that he wears throughout the film, it is obvious that although the two worlds represented by these children will collide in friendship their relationship will not last, such is the huge gap in their social standing.

Set against the background of the Pinochet military coup of 1973 the friendship between the boys is a poignant reminder that there is only one winner in such conflicts, those who already have wealth and power.

Excellent performances from Matias Quer and Ariel Mateluna, they can only stare with wide-eyed knowing innocence as the horrific events unfold. Silvana (another excellent performance from Manuela Martelli) a little older and streetwise shows them the realities of life and introduces them to the delights of kissing with condensed milk lips.

Despite the awfulness of the situation it is a charming film and not without humour.

0 out of 0 members found this review helpful.

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