She finds herself in a brain fog, walking back to her father’s ranch, and as the gravity of what’s happened sinks in, her fury rises. She heads right for the gun cabinet and straight back to the party to find her attackers. What follows is tense, suspenseful, and even though the situation isn’t wholly black and white (as she did make out with one of the college students while someone else recorded video on a mobile phone), her response is a satisfying flavor of vengeance.
Culturally, The Silent Party highlights a specific note about the infamous Latinx Machismo. Once they learn that Laura has been attacked, her father and fiance arm themselves and wade in as well. This is less, it seems, to defend her honor or redress her injury than it is a response to a territorial incursion. Her agency and control are that of a treasured pet. She’s considered acceptably high-maintenance in the same way a Ferrari supercar would be. They defer to her as princesa, but when another male puts his hands on the Ferrari, even if she consented, it’s seen as a violation of a sovereign border, a provocation that must be answered.
“The character dynamics and portrayals are realistic.”
The film is in Spanish with subtitles. I still hear comments that viewers struggle with subtitles and avoid international films because of a reluctance to “read a movie.” This is a missed opportunity. Most people tend to read chunks of text at a time, rather than one word at a time. The same thing happens with subtitles after you get used to them. After watching enough subtitled films, you should notice that a moment will come when you are no longer aware of reading the subtitles and can just focus on the action. Your brain will take in the images and the words and fuse them subconsciously. The memory you will have is that you watched a film and that an actor said some dialogue, not that you read comments on the screen. It’s movie magic.
This takes a while, but it is worth getting to because, without subtitled films, you literally miss out on a whole world of cinema. The other benefit of watching a subtitled movie is the lack of distractions. You must be directly looking at the screen, not texting, checking email, or making dinner. Subtitles force you to be focused on that film for the full runtime. It’s a gentle way of pulling yourself out of the chaos of modern life. Again, well worth doing.
The Silent Party is a great film to enjoy and to start getting comfortable with subtitles. The character dynamics and portrayals are realistic. The pace is tight, and the film’s last scene is a fantastic conclusion to the story: a little bit Telenovela, a little bit grindhouse, and 100% quality.
The Silent Party screened at the 2020 Montana International Film Festival.
"…a little bit Telenovela, a little bit grindhouse, and 100% quality."