No


No

(Pablo Larraín, 2012)

Rating: 4.5/5

Reviewed by Dave Lancaster

Summary
: An important slice of Chile's political history is given a hugely entertaining transfer to film in 'No'. Well deserved of its Oscar nomination.




One of the great things about the Hollywood rat race surrounding the Oscars is that the short films, documentaries and foreign language entries get a real boost that they never would've seen before, showcasing some real gems. Pablo Larraín's 'No', which is up for Best Foreign Language Film, is such a discovery.

'No' retells a very important part of Chile's history: it's 1988 and dictator Pinochet has been in power for 16 years. International pressure has forced him to at least stage a national plebiscite allowing the people to vote 'YES' to another eight year office term or 'NO' to get him out of power. But the playing field wasn't exactly level. The 'YES' party could campaign on TV 24/7 while the 'NO' party was restricted to daily 15 minute slots late at night. Their campaign really needed to connect, and fast.



The issue wasn't so much what the people wanted but how to get the message across that it was safe to vote and that the alternative to Pincohet is a brighter future. Enter advertising exec René Saavedra (a sublime Gael García Bernal) who is more used to flogging soft drinks and microwaves with glamour and escapism. He's the brainchild behind a plan to campaign with happiness, humour and a positive attitude, drastically moving away from the usual stock footage of massacres and fearful statistics. René Saavedra is selling something. It just happens to be democracy and freedom from dictatorship.

Pablo Larraín's film injects so much life into his film and brims with unexpected laughs. His narrative doesn't stress on how dangerous it was for the 'No' campaigners when he can get us to enjoy the company of the characters so much that if one was to be eliminated you'd be shocked.

Even more engaging than that is the style in which it is shot: it looks like it's been filmed on videotape fitting in perfectly with what television news crews used during the time period. This works twofold in that it feels more realistic and also because Larraín can seamlessly slot in stock footage and actual campaign material without any noticeable dips in quality.

This is brave, rewarding viewing with a clear history lesson operating side by side with the pitch perfect dramatics. It's also a fascinating insight into how politics and marketing have since become so unashamedly entwined. 'No' is fully deserving of its Oscar nomination and gets my recommendation.

Watch the trailer for 'NO' here at Cinemas Online

Other film news

Mr Turner and Birdman lead nominations for 35th London Critics' Circle Film Awards

The London Film Critics' Circle has announced the nominations for its 35th annual awards ceremony, with Mike Leigh's historical biopic Mr Turner leading the way with seven nominations, including Film of the Year and British Film of the Year.

Sony hack: James Bond film Spectre script leaked, Clooney's 'sleepless nights', Jolie bashing, salary revelations and more

The massive hack on film studio sony Pictures has become a media firestorm with a wealth of sensitive information being leaked by hacking group Guardians of Peace. Here's the rundown of events:

FIRST TRAILER: Sean Penn turns action star in 'The Gunman'

Double Oscar winner Sean Penn hasn't been known to close in the most commercial of film projects, but as he's reached his fifties the 'Mystic River' and 'Milk' star appears to have had a change of heart.

Full list of Golden Globe nominations plus snubs and stars reactions

The Golden Globe nominations have been announced and ‘Birdman’ ‘Boyhood’ and ‘Imitation Game’ are leading the pack while some heavy hitters found themselves snubbed: 'Interstellar' settled for just a music nomination for Hans Zimmer's score and Angelina Jolie's 'Unbroken' got nothing, as did Clint Eastwood's war drama 'American Sniper' starring a snubbed Bradley Cooper.

Sony hackers reportedly demand the release of 'The Interview' be scrapped

The hackers that struck Sony Pictures and revealed star salaries as well as leaking screener copies of some of their films onto torrent websites have taunted the studio again.

Mark Wahlberg seeks pardon for historical assault crime

'The Fighter' star Mark Wahlberg is seeking redemption - he's just filed for a pardon over a crime he was convicted of back in 1988.

Watch the entire cast, title, car, synopsis and release date announcement of James Bond 24: Spectre

'Skyfall' director Sam Mendes took to the Pinewood Studios stage to formally announce the particulars of the forthcoming James Bond movie. The Oscar winner revealed that 007's 24th adventure would be titled 'Spectre'.

Actor Mickey Rourke's triumphant boxing return: Opponent 'was paid to throw the fight'

Amateur boxer turned pin-up actor turned pro boxer turned Oscar nominated actor turned pro boxer again Mickey Rourke scored a professional boxing match win at the age of 62 last week, but some sources now claim the two round fight was rigged.

Full list: 'Birdman' leads Independent Spirit Award nominations

One of the earliest to announce their film picks in the awards season, the Independent Spirit Awards have revealed their nominations with director Alejandro G. Inarritu's 'Birdman' leading the way with six noms.

Spielberg, Streep, Pacino and more pay tribute to Oscar winning director of 'The Graduate' Mike Nichols

Mike Nichols, the visionary director who won an Oscar for one of the most definitive pictures of the 1960s - 'The Graduate' - and was nominated for a further four, has died aged 83.

More women speak out as Bill Cosby 'refuses to dignify rape allegations with any comment'

Sexual assault allegations have once again surfaced against comedian and actor Bill Cosby, but he has flat-out refused to address them.

Christoph Waltz 'to play next Bond villain'

Quentin Tarantino favourite and double Oscar winner Christoph Waltz is set to play the next villain the James Bond franchise, according to reports.

Sam Raimi to direct Evil Dead TV series starring Bruce Campbell

It's official: 'The Evil Dead' is coming back to screens with original star Bruce Campbell involved alongside director Sam Raimi.

Matt Damon confirms 'I'm doing another Bourne movie for 2016'

Oscar winner Matt Damon has confirmed that he's returning to the espionage Bourne franchise with another movie set to be released in 2016.

The Fault in Our Stars: Shailene Woodley & Ansel Elgort interview

To celebrate the DVD and Blu-ray release of The Fault in Our Stars (out November 3rd), check out this interview with lead actors Shailene Woodley (Hazel) & Ansel Elgort (Gus).

Tom Hanks to write book of short stories

'Captain Philips' Oscar winner Tom Hanks is adding another feather to his cap - he's just revealed plans to enter the field of literature.

Land Rover reveals the UK's top 40 most-loved sci-fi films

The 1982 family-favourite, about an extra-terrestrial trying to return home beat other sci-fi heavy hittings such as Ridley Scott's horror 'Alien' and the Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones buddy comedy 'Men in Black' to the top spot.

Benedict Cumberbatch lined up to play Marvel's 'Doctor Strange'

Benedict Cumberbatch is now in the frame to add the Marvel superhero universe to his already glowing CV.

Jena Malone playing female Robin in 'Batman v Superman': Extra who leaked news could be fined $5m

According to an anonymous extra on the set of upcoming superhero epic 'Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice', Jena Malone has been cast as a female version of Batman's sidekick Robin.

Robert Rodriguez sues financers of 'Sin City 2' and 'Machete Kills' over non-payment of $7.7 Million

'Desperado' filmmaker Robert Rodriguez is taking desperate measures against the financiers of most recently released movies 'Sin City 2' and 'Machete Kills'.

Find Your Cinema

Cinemas Online supply showtimes for every cinema in the UK. To find out what's playing near you and to register for weekly showtimes updates from your local cinema, just enter your postcode:

Advertisement : content continues below
Advertisement : content continues below
Advertisement

| Privacy Policy | Contact Cinemas Online