Wise: Hola, Werth. Why are you wearing a sombrero?
Werth: Because, dear film friend, I want to go South of the Border!
Wise: Did you OD on your Lupe Velez pills again?
Werth: No. Tuesday was National Margarita Day so I’m dreaming of Mexico—land of endless beaches, shady palms, and—
Wise: —bottomless drinks.
Werth: —bottomless cheap drinks.
Wise: You know, when I hear “Mexico” and “bottomless” in the same sentence, I’m usually hoping that it refers to nachos—
Werth: No comment.
Wise: —but lately I’ve been thinking about one of my favorite movies from Mexico that features bottomless despair.
Werth: I take it then you are not going to be talking about Dolores del Rio doing the samba on the wing of a bi-plane.
Werth: Subtle acting, visual storytelling. I’m in! Tell me more.
It’s a wrenching examination of a man as he struggles to decide whether this other woman is a wicked temptation or a boon from heaven destined to deepen his faith. I know it sounds like the kind of pompous self-torture typical to a certain breed of art house flick, but Silent Light is truly mesmerizing from the opening shot of the mute night sky receding to reveal the cacophonous day to the final shot of the inky twilight shrouding the world in silence again.
Werth: I think you’re just partial to Mennonite fashion.
Wise: Sure, that has something to do with it, but I think anyone can recognize the agonies faced by these characters and can celebrate how they’re transformed.
Wise: You watched a rattlesnake scene?
Werth: No. Apparently she didn’t feel much like singing because she didn’t get along with either Eastwood or Siegel. Nonetheless, she adds a touch of class and humor to a genre that was characterized by abject poverty, senseless violence and sparse dialogue.
Wise: What about the two mules?
Werth: They’re adorable plus the always brilliant Ennio Morricone gives them a musical theme that you won’t be able to stop eee-yaw-ing.
Wise: So does this mean we’re going on a Mexican vacation to visit the Amish and some donkeys?
Werth: Only if I get a large sun hat... and they get rid of all of the rattlesnakes.
Wise: I guess that means we’ll see everyone next week North of the Border for our Film Gab with Werth and Wise Post-Oscar Wrap-up!