Daniel y Ana (Daniel & Ana) (2009)

Animal instincts

Director Michel Franco’s first feature, Daniel y Ana (2010) is a powerfully ‘silent’ movie about brother and sister, Daniel (Dario Yazbek Bernal) and Ana (Marimar Vega).

Set in a rich neighbourhood in Mexico, we are introduced to the perfect lives of two people who are suddenly jolted into the harsh realities of street life – they are kidnapped, then forced to have sex with each other on camera, in order to save their lives.

After having chosen to live, they manage to get back home and thus to carry on with their lives. Happily?

Well, from this point on we see a silent, yet destructive drama develop. Eventually, Ana seems to get over the shock, decides to see a shrink and to continue planning her marriage – without saying a word of what went on between her and her brother.

On the other hand, Daniel turns in a monster. Refusing to see a psychologist and incapable of following his classes, he is drowning in a return to his base instincts and rapes Ana at home.

Bernal deserves an Oscar, no question – the movie is singularly
shocking, with the silence of Daniel’s transformation almost deafening, and it raises many questions about the fragility of human existence. Worth seeing!

90 mins. In Spanish.

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