Chile, 1948: Senator Pablo Neruda, diplomat and future Nobel Prize-winning poet, accuses the government of betraying the Communist Party and is swiftly impeached. Pursued by the police, Neruda and his artist wife are forced into hiding and an intimate game of cat and mouse begins. In Europe, the legend of the poet hounded by the policeman grows - and artists, led by Picasso, call for his freedom. Neruda, meanwhile, inspired by his transformative new life as a fugitive, writes his epic collection of poems, Canto General, capturing the turmoil of a Latin America in crisis. Paying homage to a mercurial creator who is impossible to pin down in conventional biography, this playful, inventive feature by acclaimed director Pablo Larrain (Jackie and Oscar-nominated NO) is the story of the escape, the investigation and the literary legend of a man once hailed as 'the greatest poet of the 20th century'. Starring Luis Gnecco and Gael Garcia Bernal, the film plays out like a road movie, inviting us to soar alongside Neruda in his poetry, his memory, and his deeply held - sometimes paradoxical - political ideals.
Not a successful mix of poetry and biography
- Neruda review by JR
This film looks like a film from the 40's - slightly out of focus but not black and white but in bleached colour. The performances are stilted and unnatural, and the scenes seem to jump abruptly from one to another. Bernal is miscast as as Neruda's nemesis. A much better film which mixes poetry and biography is 'A Quiet Passion'.