Everybody knows that the post-Oscar months are not the best ones to go to the movies. After all, films released in the beginning of the year tend to be forgotten by The Academy, which leads the studios to concentrate their most important productions later in the year. But is this really true? Well, certainly not if you are a fan of foreign movies. Proof of that is Everybody Knows, starring Penélope Cruz (Volver, Vicky Cristina Barcelona), Javier Bardem (No Country for Old Man, The Sea Inside) and Ricardo Darín (Wild Tales, The Secret in Their Eyes).
The film starts with Laura (Penélope Cruz) and her children returning home to an idyllic Spanish town for her sister’s wedding. The celebrations, however, will soon be replaced by a mystery that threatens to ruin the family and expose old secrets.
When the movie starts, with its expansive characters and sunny cinematography created by Pedro Almodóvar’s longtime cinematographer, José Luis Alcaine, the connection of Everybody Knows with its writer and director, the Iranian Asghar Farhadi, is far from obvious. But soon the kind of mystery and family drama explored by the director in movies like A Separation, About Elly and The Salesman become obvious, albeit in a more accessible and engaging way.
The event that unravels all the secrets and fear is the disappearance of Laura’s teenage daughter during the wedding party. It is when Farhadi’s apparent fascination for long-kept secrets and untold stories takes over the plot, and the family finds out that, as the film’s trailer reminds us, “even when life has moved on, the past doesn’t always stay in the past.”
- Lalu Farias