Biutiful

Biutiful

Director: Alejandro González Iñárritu, Javier Bardem, Maricel Álvarez, Eduard Fernández

Cast: Alejandro González Iñárritu, Javier Bardem, Maricel Álvarez, Eduard Fernández

     
 

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A man tries to reconcile his desire to be good with his lawless ways in this dark drama from Mexican auteur Alejandro González Iñárritu. Uxbal (Javier Bardem) is a man with a bright side and a dark side. Uxbal is a caring father who is strong but affectionate toward his two children, Ana

Overview

A man tries to reconcile his desire to be good with his lawless ways in this dark drama from Mexican auteur Alejandro González Iñárritu. Uxbal (Javier Bardem) is a man with a bright side and a dark side. Uxbal is a caring father who is strong but affectionate toward his two children, Ana (Hanaa Bouchaib) and Mateo (Guillermo Estrella), and he struggles to maintain a healthy relationship with their mother, Marambra (Maricel Álvarez), despite her problems with alcohol and instability. But Uxbal is also a criminal who oversees a small underground empire alongside fellow crime boss Hai (Taisheng Cheng) and Uxbal's impulsive brother, Tito (Eduard Fernández). Uxbal's dealings range from drugs to construction, but unlike his partners in crime, he tries to treat those around him with dignity even as he trades in human misery. Uxbal's precarious world begins to collapse when he's diagnosed with a serious illness and told he has only a few weeks left to live; he tries to put his affairs in order in the time he has left, but realizes that few around him have any sense of responsibility. Biutiful receives its world premiere at the 2010 Cannes Film Festival.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Perry Seibert
In all of his previous films, director Alejandro González Iñárritu chronicled the mostly tragic lives of many different characters. However, with his 2010 drama, Biutiful, the internationally renowned Mexican filmmaker focuses on a single protagonist who faces just as many tragic circumstances as all the characters in Iñárritu's Oscar-nominated Babel -- combined. How is Uxbal's (Javier Bardem) life going wrong? Let me count the ways. One: he's a single father of two children who scrapes out a living through a number of illegal activities -- he oversees a small drug operation and he helps manage a sweatshop run by two Asian gangsters. Two: his ex-wife, an addict whose erratic behavior continues to complicate life for Uxbal and their kids, is sleeping with Uxbal's brother. Three: his own father recently passed away. Four: he's urinating blood, and about to get a dire prognosis. Five: he can talk to the dead. As his health continues to deteriorate, Uxbal tries to get his affairs in order, keep his kids safe, and find forgiveness for a selfish act that leads to multiple deaths. Miraculously, Biutiful turns out to be less of a depressing slog than Iñárritu's last two films, thanks in large part to the excellent lead performance by Javier Bardem. Many actors would have begged for our sympathies by playing up the melodramatic elements of Uxbal's circumstances -- Nic Cage would probably have turned this character into a screaming ball of neuroses and tics. But Bardem is a strong, masculine presence who's magnetic onscreen even when he's not doing much of anything; he's a perfect embodiment of the old axiom that less is more -- consider his chilling, Oscar-winning turn as the relentless killer in No Country for Old Men. He understands that what Uxbal is going through is so incredibly melodramatic that the only way for it to stay real is to minimize his emotional responses. He's not stoic, just restrained, and because he modulates his performance this way, the few times the character does explode it's all the more powerful. Bardem's uncanny emotional economy actually seems to have had an effect on Iñárritu as a director. Unlike Babel and 21 Grams, Biutiful doesn't seem designed for the sole purpose of putting the audience through an emotional gauntlet. Uxbal is arguably the most complex and sympathetic character he's created, and for the first time in his career Iñárritu fully trusts his audience and his actor. It's not a radical change in tone -- there is an unrelenting sadness that weighs down every frame of the movie -- but for the first time it feels like it's the people in the movie that are struggling as opposed to us in the audience.

Product Details

Release Date:
05/31/2011
UPC:
0012236114000
Original Release:
2010
Rating:
R
Source:
Lions Gate
Region Code:
1
Presentation:
[Wide Screen]
Sound:
[Dolby AC-3 Surround Sound]
Time:
2:27:00
Sales rank:
27,911

Special Features

Closed Caption

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Javier Bardem Uxbal
Maricel Álvarez Maramba
Eduard Fernández Tito
Diarytou Daff Ige
Cheng Taishen Hai
Cheikh Ndiaye Ekweme
Luo Jin Liwei
Hanaa Bouchaib Ana
Guillermo Estrella Mateo
Ruben Ochandiano Zanc
George Chibuikwem Chukwuma Samuel
Lang Sofia Lin Li
Yodian Yang Obese Chinese Man
Tuo Lin Bartender Hai
Xueheng Chen Chinese Bodega
Xiaoyan Zhang Jung
Ye Ailie Hai's Father
Xianlin Bao Hai's Mother
Ana Wagener Bea
Karra Elejalde Mendoza
Nasser Saleh Muchacho
Tomas del Estal Man in Black
Ángel Luis Arjona Dead Child
Dolores Echepares Funeral Director
Adelfa Calvo Large Woman
Manuel Solo Doctor
Violeta Pérez Nurse
Germán Almendros Surgeon 1
Isaac Alcaide Surgeon 2
Nacho Moliné Surgeon 3
Carmen La Lata Old Woman
Annabel Totusaus Farm Secretary
Eduardo Gomez Naked Man
Ramón Elies Cemetery Worker 1
Juan Vicente Sánchez Cemetery Worker 2
Félix Cubero Bureaucrat
Carmen Peleteiro Waitress
Federico Muñoz Mayor
Leticia Albizuri Young Girl
María Casado News Presenter
Judith Huertas News Reporter
Aroa Ortiz Stripper
Victoria M. Díaz Stripper
Sonia Cruz Stripper
Sophie Evans Stripper
Luna Jiménez Colindres Stripper
Dunia Montenegro Stripper
Rodica Ioana Ungureanu Stripper

Technical Credits
Alejandro González Iñárritu Director,Original Story,Producer,Screenwriter
Armando Bo Screenwriter
Fernando Bovaira Producer
Brigitte Broch Art Director,Production Designer
Alfonso Cuarón Associate Producer
Paco Delgado Costumes/Costume Designer
Lynn Fainchtein Musical Direction/Supervision
José Garcia Sound/Sound Designer
Nicolás Giacobone Screenwriter
Guillermo del Toro Associate Producer
Sandra Hermida Co-producer
Martin Hernandez Sound/Sound Designer
Jon Kilik Producer
David Linde Executive Producer
Stephen Mirrione Editor
Rodrigo Prieto Cinematographer
Ann Ruark Co-producer
Gustavo Santolalla Score Composer
Javier Soto Asst. Director

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Biutiful
1. It's Pretty [:29]
2. Thank You [8:09]
3. Hang on a Minute [10:24]
4. Now What? [9:32]
5. Police [10:38]
6. The Kids [8:28]
7. Get Up [7:37]
8. You're Dying [9:40]
9. Don't Be Foolish [8:26]
10. That's About It [10:04]
11. Marambra [4:18]
12. Mateo [5:39]
13. Where Are the Kids? [10:28]
14. Happy Birthday [8:36]
15. Ige? [10:22]
16. End Credits [6:49]

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