The Man Next Door

Leonardo, a successful industrial designer, lives with his family in an architectural wonder, a midcentury Le Corbusier home. One morning, he wakes to an irksome noise and is appalled to discover that workmen next door are constructing a large window that faces directly into his home. Leonardo protests, using a number of excuses (privacy, building codes, his wife), in an attempt to coerce his neighbor, Victor, into scrapping his plan. But Victor just wants a patch of sun to catch some rays. Thus, one man’s light is another man’s blight.

Enamored of architecture, the film is meticulously designed. Mariano Cohn and Gastón Duprat give it a carefully crafted weirdness as well as a figurative quality. Its caustic humor comes in contemplating why the window completely undermines Leonardo. Does it reveal his arrogance, affectation, and lack of compassion; or dispel his bourgeois illusion of power? The Man Next Door offers a biting critique of moral shallowness—and what happens when thou dost not love thy neighbor’s window.

Living Stars

In Buenos Aires, they are dancing. Dozens of real people, identified simply by name and occupation, are presented in their kitchens, living rooms, offices, and streets—each dancing to a fairly well-known pop song. Young and old, alone and with others, they perform for the camera with a rawness usually only reserved for the bathroom mirror. This is Living Stars. [Synopsis courtesy of Sundance Film Festival]