I Don't Expect Anyone to Believe Me (2023)

I Don't Expect Anyone to Believe Me (2023)

An eccentric Mexican crime thriller adaptation for the eccentric, satirical novel

7.0

Movie

Mexico
Spanish
Comedy, Crime, Drama
2023
LUIS FERNANDO FRÍAS DE LA PARRA
Alexis Ayala, Ángel Zermen, Anna Castillo
117 min

TLDR

I don’t expect new viewers to get this, it took a while for me too. But it’s definitely an unexpected watch that feels entirely new.

What it's about

Wanting to be a writer, Juan Pablo plans to travel to Barcelona, where he’s won a PhD scholarship in literature. Before he leaves Mexico though, his plan goes off-script when a crime syndicate pushes him to do them a favor.

The take

If you’re new to the story, I Don’t Expect Anyone to Believe Me feels difficult to understand. The film adaptation portrays the novel through abruptly cut sequences, meticulously framed naturalistic frames, and monologue and dialogue that mean more than what’s being said, on top of Juan Pablo’s gradual descent into a criminal network. It’s as disorienting as being in Barcelona feels for Mexican couple Juan Pablo and Val. However, this film feels like a new approach in adapting novels – the multiple perspectives and epistolary portions adeptly portrayed through typed up screens and alternating perspectives (and direction) between the couple. It doesn’t feel like something that you’ve likely seen before.

What stands out

Being based on a book, I Don’t Expect Anyone to Believe Me needed to be able to portray the novel’s multiple perspectives and occasional epistolary episodes into film. Plenty of the internal streams of thought and dialogue are the means through which the original author slips in commentary. That being said, the film is able to make these dialogues feel like more than just conversations, and these monologues feel more than just preaching. It’s never straightforward, it’s always implying something else. These subtleties are complemented by the editing, the way the film places and removes internal voice overs, the way the start relies on abrupt cuts rather than natural transitions, and the varying paces between Val and Juan Pablo’s perspectives of Barcelona. It’s the careful handling of these subtleties that make the film feel like a puzzle to figure out.

Comments

Add a comment

UP NEXT 

UP NEXT 

UP NEXT 

A Deadly Invitation (2023)

A Mexican whodunit that feels more like an infodump than a compelling murder mystery

5.5

The Half of It (2020)

An atmospheric romance that starts with “this is not a love story"

7.3

Holy Spider (2022)

A timely and terrifying noir that takes on systemic abuse and corruption in Iran

8.0

El Conde (2023)

Pablo Larraín returns home with this darkly humorous vampire satire about the Chilean dictator

7.7

Argentina, 1985 (2022)

A gripping courtroom drama tracking the fall of Argentina's military dictatorship

7.9

Crooklyn (1994)

Spike Lee’s ode to the Brooklyn of his childhood is bursting with color, music, and nostalgia

7.8

Sin Nombre (2009)

8.0

Strawberry and Chocolate (1994)

Exploring art, literature, and love in the vibrant streets of Havana

7.8

A Cop Movie (2021)

An empathetic and impressively inventive look at the notoriously corrupt Mexican police force

7.5

Attica (2021)

A detailed and hyper-focused oral history that knows exactly where it stands

7.1

Curated by humans, not algorithms.

agmtw logo

© 2024 agoodmovietowatch, all rights reserved.