Review: ‘La Dosis’ explores who we are in the shadows.

La Dosis

Marcos is an experienced nurse who works the night shift of a private clinic. He is successful and professional, though it is soon revealed that he uses his position to help suffering patients find early peace. A new nurse in the clinic, Gabriel, shakes the sector: he is young, intelligent, beautiful, and seduces everyone. He soon deciphers Marcos’ secret and the clinic becomes a battle of wits and seduction. Marcos retracts until he discovers that Gabriel also dabbles in euthanasia, though for different reasons. This revelation forces him to confront Gabriel and Marcos knows that only by exposing his own true identity will he be able to stop him. 

La Dosis is a dark psychological thriller that from the very first scene pushes viewers to consider the harsh and subjective balance between life and death. At its center is Marcos, the lead overnight nurse of the ICU unit in a private hospital. By now, audiences are accustomed to anti-hero protagonists, so it is not hard to find compassion for Marcos even as he makes the ethically murky decision to euthanize critically ill patients that are suffering in their final days. In a nuanced and complex performance, Carlos Portaluppi excels in infusing Marcos’ actions with compassion. Through the many moody silent stretches of the film, the audience watches Marcos alone in shadowed rooms and backlit hallways as the weight of his actions plays across his face. 

The fragile morality of Marcos’ world is shattered, however, by the arrival of Gabriel (Ignacio Rogers), a young charismatic nurse that immediately charms patients and hospital colleagues alike. Gabriel understands Marcos’ impulses at once, but it soon becomes clear that he has his own darker code. The discovery compels Marcos to reexamine the complex web of justifications that he has been telling himself for years. When is it mercy? When is it just power? Is there a difference? It also pushes Marcos toward action, even if he is putting himself at risk by exposing more egregious crimes. 

The most compelling scenes in the film are interchanges between Gabriel and Marcos as they confront, coerce, and ultimately conspire for and against each other. In one tense nihilistic exchange, Gabriel exclaims to Marcos, “We are the only ones who care about what we do. Have you realized that?” 

At its core, La Dosis is a complex meditation on power, the balance of which shifts subtly from scene to scene. It is not until the final shot that it is revealed who comes out on top.

LA DOSIS, the sharp slow-burn thriller from distributor Samuel Goldwyn Films, will be released on-demand and digital on June 11, 2021. The film world premiered at the Rotterdam Film Festival in 2020, and also played BFI Flare, the Fantasia Film Festival, and others.

Release Date:                        On VOD/digital on June 11, 2021
Directed by:                           Martín Kraut
Cast:                                       Carlos Portaluppi, Ignacio Rogers, Lorena Vega
Genre:                                    Thriller
Specs:                                    93 min
Distributor:                            Samuel Goldwyn Films

Jeremy’s Review: Hernán Guerschuny’s ‘The Film Critic’ Is a Satisfying Meta French New Wave Tribute


Much in the same way that the last film I reviewed, Justin Reardon‘s Playing It Cool (read review here), took on its subject in a manner that can only be described as meta, Hernán Guerschuny takes a similar concept and flips it.It seems that the film world is now fertile ground for movies (frankly none of them hold a candle to Altman‘s The Player). So let’s see how this one shakes out…

Víctor (Rafael Spregelburd) in THE FILM CRITIC. Courtesy of Music Box Films

Instead of screenwriter incapable of falling in love being commissioned to write a romantic comedy, we get a famous, surly film critic, Victor Tellez (Rafael Spregelburd) who is notorious for trashing every movie he sees. Day after day, he goes with a set of other critics to watch unoriginal movies that have no soul (according to him). They go to the same coffee shop afterwards to discuss further the films they have seen and then adjourn to write their respective reviews. Tellez is in an interesting place in his personal, perhaps explaining his bitterness. He has just broken up with his special ladyfriend and is in desperate need of a new apartment as the building he’s living in is undergoing construction and the hammering is driving him crazy. Add to it that his newspaper editor is on his case about how he trashes every movie and is threatening to rewrite his reviews to make the distributors happier with them, he’s got a lot on his plate. And is doesn’t get any less complicated when Sofia (the stunning Dolores Fonzi) enters his life, at first hating one another, then…falling for one another.

The Film Critic - 1

But can it work? She, who is at times is affectionate and others aloof and secretive clashes with his minimalist existence, filled by films and conversation and an unhealthy obsession with the women he’s seen in classic films (namely Jean Seberg in Godard‘s À bout de souffle) and using them as his standard of measure. Clearly something needs to give. But when Tellez needs some extra cash, he ventures into territory in the same vein as the likes of Godard,Truffaut and all of the other Cahiers du Cinema critics did back in the late 50s – making their own films, although in Tellez’s case, he only takes an assignment to write a script. The final complication is that he ends up writing his own life and specifically focusing on his relationship with Sofia, all of which she is unaware.Like Belmondo‘s Michel Poiccard, his goose is cooked. And worst of all…the movie sucks.

The Film Critic - 3

I really enjoyed this film. Where it succeeds, however, it also kind of fails. The familiar cliches that the Tellez character rants against appear in an ironic way in his own story, but they aren’t reconciled in a satisfying way, not turning them enough on their head to make a statement about them. Despite that, however, Guerschuny weaves an interesting enough tale to keep the viewer engaged. In the latter part of the second act and into the third act, the film shifts gears, somewhat jarringly, into unexpected territory in a side plot involving a disgruntled director (Ignacio Rogers) taking revenge for a bad review that Tellez wrote of his film. Somewhat out of place, the film quickly rights itself and gets back on its proper trajectory with somewhat surprising results. Dolores Fonzi is really quite angelic in this film and is expertly cast in the mysterious role of Sofia. Likewise, Spregelburd fits his role as the bearded, overly pretentious film critic to a T. They have wonderful chemistry together on screen as well.

The Film Critic - 2

The Film Critic‘s successes may be varied, but it is still a worthwhile viewing. As someone who obviously reviews movies, it’s interesting to see a role like that woven into a film. Guerschuny shows a deft touch for a first-time writer/director and I hope to see more films from him in the future, especially as the South American film scene sis beginning to make a name for itself.

The Film Critic opens in theaters and hits VOD today.