The high drama subject of a the spanish conquest of south america is given defianly low drema treatment in agustin diaz yanes gold to the extent that you wonder how its possible to extract so little adventure from such a rich mine of raw material. Plodding along much as its characters do in the general direction of nowhere what initially looks like an ambitous attempt take to deliver some anti ridley scott 1492 realism to this hyper mythologized period of spanish american history ends up drab and suspense free with only a handful of decent perfs some striking visuals and a few sharp moments able to offset the lack of interest it inspires in either or character. File under opportunity wasted for an item which has performed below expectations at home spanish language bookings await.
Like a previous diaz yanes feature 2006s viggo mortensen starring captain alatriste gold is based on work by the historical novelist arturo perez reverte. In 1538 in the amazon jungle martin davila raul arevalo rises from a group of slain natives to introduce via vocieover a sizeable list of spaniards who have set off in pursuit of a city of gold then as now money is the only god that unites us all. The group is led by aging tyrant don gonzalo jose manuel cervino given to summarily putting his charges to death. He is accompanied by his young wife dona ana barbara lennie the object of the affections of the ruthless lieutenant gorriamendi oscar jaeneda gonzalo ambitious second in command. Other key figures are sergeant bastaurres a dashing curly locked jose coronado and halfhand indian juan carlos aduviri doing translation duties.
Money of course divides as much as it unites and the early part of the movie is dominated by the threat from a rival gang led by medrano rafael cebrian which will end in a bloody convincingly rendered conflict. Its in stand alone sequences like this or an encunter with an indian tribe later that gold works if it works at all what missing is any throughline. Perhaps inadvertently gold captures well the tedium of trudging through the jungle for 62 days and some scenes point up well the dangers Occasionally for example as they are crossing a river someone will disappear as food for presumably an unseen croc. Nature has other dangers one scene has a priest pater vargas luis callejo being dragged down into quicksand while the other look on chuckling at his fate. The expression on vargas face as he uncomplainingly goes down is wonderful and incidentally this is a stoic manly world in which nobody ever seems to complain about anything or indeed have many emotions at all.
Gold Movie Agustin Diaz Yanes Historical Drama Follows A motley Crew Of Bounty Hunters through The Jungle,