Son of the Bride
(El Hijo de la Novia)
March 22, 2002
If you think Americans are the only ones who face a mid-life crisis and the reality of an unfulfilling life, and tons of emotional baggage, this film is out to prove you wrong. Argentinean director and co-writer (along with Fernando Castets) Juan Jose Campanella brings us this touching tale about rediscovering the importance of family.
The movie is about Rafael Belvedere (Ricardo Darin). He is a stereotypical 42-year-old businessman/divorcee. He shows more concern with running the family business than to those around him. He is sarcastic and brutally honest about his feelings. And his familial and other relationships suffer because of this.
Now a few things come up to add stress to Rafael’s life. 1) His father Nino (Hector Alterio) has decided that he wants to give his wife the proper church wedding that he didn’t give her 44 years ago. And he puts Rafael in charge of the arrangements. Of course, Rafael thinks the wedding is a bad idea considering that his mother is in a home for Alzheimer’s patients. 2) Rafael gets into heated discussions with his girlfriend and one of his childhood friends about the wedding. They both think it’s a wonderful idea and we know how Rafael feels. 3) Rafael’s weekly meetings with his daughter Vicky (Gimena Nobile) always break down into a screaming match.
Rafael’s blood pressure finally reaches the breaking point and he suffers a heart attack. The incident causes him to re-evaluate his life and how he has been treating people.
This film is one of the nominees for Best Foreign Language Film at the 2002 Academy Awards. In addition to this acknowledgement, the film has won numerous awards, including Best Latin-American Feature Film and the Special Grand Prize of the Jury at the 2001 Montreal World film Festival and the Audience and OCIC Awards at the 2001 Havana film Festival. (Marty Doskins/BOP)