Bonsai

Directed by Cristián Jiménez
  • Chile / France / Argentina / Portugal
  • 92 minutes
  • 2011

“One of the finest accomplishments from the freewheeling new generation of Chilean filmmakers” Variety

Based on the much-lauded novel by Alejandro Zambra, Bonsái is the second feature from Chilean director Cristián Jiménez, whose debut Optical Illusions screened to international acclaim.

The story centres on the lengthy love affair between two college students – Julio (Diego Noguera) and Emilia (Nathalia Galgani). We’re told from the beginning where their fate lies. To get to that point however, Jimenez employs a flash forward/backward dynamic that softens the blow.

Julio is a young man obsessed with literature. He meets Emilia after a class during which he’s lied about reading Proust. Skipping ahead 8 years in the future, Julio now longs to be a writer himself. He applies for a job as a typist to the famous novelist Gazmuri but when he loses out, he pretends the job is his to impress his attractive neighbour, Blanca. The story he writes instead is based on his own love affair with Emilia.

Hip, funny and moving, Bonsái features pitch perfect performances from a very talented cast. Diego Noguera is both funny and touching while Nathalia Galgani has a simmering Latin sensuality that, together with superlative direction from one of Chile’s rising stars, make Bonsái a real cinematic treat. - Suzanne Ballantyne, Raindance Film Festival

Gabriela Arancibia, Diego Noguera, Nathalia Galgani