Heroic Losers (La odisea de los giles) — Moro Spanish Film Festival 2021

In the small Argentinian town of Villa Alsina, Fermín Perlassi (Ricardo Darín); his wife, Lidia (Verónica Llinás); and their friend Antonio Fontana (Luis Brandoni) see the potential for reopening an agricultural business, La Metodica, long abandoned since going bankrupt years earlier.  Their plan is to bring the business back to life by forming a co-operative.

With wit and charm and reliance on the complexity of chocolate cake, they manage to bring on board surly but steadfast mechanic Rolo (Daniel Aráoz); unemployed ex-military enthusiast and fundamental anarchist with a love of dynamite Atanasio (Carlos Bellosa); the entertainingly dense but cheerful fix-it brothers Eladio (Alejandro Gigena) and José (Guillermo Jacubowicz); and a good-hearted businesswoman, Carmén (Rita Cortese), to join the scheme, and they take their investments to the bank. And then the money promptly disappears in Argentina’s 2001 financial crisis.

But when the co-operative’s members learn that a crooked lawyer, Fortunato Manzi (Andrés Parra), may have their money, the worm must decide whether to turn.

With brilliant performances all round, perfect comic timing, imaginative twists and turns, and some “Oh no!” moments, Heroic Losers is sure to lighten the heart and put a spring in your step.

— MICHELE E. HAWKINS

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