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Ultrainocencia (2020)


A person’s faith is a very personal ordeal, one that others likely won’t fully understand. Some believe in God, some people in many gods, and others believe that believing in any god is a waste of time. With this I ask you: Do you believe in God? Two eccentric men, Adán (Pablo Molinero) and Orión (David Climent) plan to prove that God is real. Ultrainocencia sees the two kind-hearted men scrambling to find an answer–will they find one?

Albert Einstein once said “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.” This quote so brilliantly represents the two leads of Ultrainocencia. As they try, and try again, to find answers to this harrowing question, they find themselves in a seemingly infinite loop of disappointment and sadness–but this doesn’t deter them from working toward their goal. As the characters experience this loop of anything but success, viewers are taken on the same ride–antagonized beyond belief, feeling like even their reality is spiraling. It seems backwards to think that antagonizing viewers might attract them to the film, but that’s exactly what it does. Feeling this sense of hopelessness as I watched made me feel like I had some skin in the game, like somehow this story had an effect on my life–and that pulled me in closer.

I often wonder how actors portray such goofy characters without looking out of place or, even in their best takes, have some sort of tell expressing how ridiculous their roles are. The reality, however, is that this is simply the mark of a talented actor. Both Molinero and Climent are just that–talented. The two are full of energy and vigor, and they feed off of one another as if they have been best friends for years. Ultrainocencia showcases the brilliance of two, fairly inexperienced, actors–and they play a massive role in the positive reception of the film.

There is a juxtaposition between innocence and culpability that transcends the entirety of Ultrainoncencia. The constant back and forth between a clean, white backdrop and a heavy, crippling darkness creates division throughout the film–but this division represents what Adán and Orión experience on their journey–and it creates a visually appealing aesthetic that expresses emotion and tone. In an interesting way, this aspect of the film represents what it is that Adán and Orión are attempting to prove–that somewhere, something completely intangible can be expressed visually. This is a beautiful parallel between the protagonist's journey through Ultrainocencia and the emotional pull of religious belief.

Comedy and religion don’t always go together because, well, people can be sensitive about their beliefs. However, Ultrainocencia pairs the two together beautifully and creates what I believe to be a completely acceptable form of comedic review and critique of religion as a whole. The dry humor present aims not to antagonize followers too greatly by being subtle, but still expresses its criticisms, and the absurdities in an understandable and relatable fashion. The comedy flows from Climent and Molinero with greatness and precision, and it lands gracefully on the ears and hearts of everyone watching.

Ultrainocencia sees religion, comedy, and precise visuals merge to create a unique story of discovering (and proving) faith. Guided by two incredible talents in Molinero and Climent, Ultrainocencia is brilliantly relatable, full of life, and one of the more interesting and understandable takes on religion that I’ve ever seen.

Directed by Manuel Arija.

Written by Manuel Arija, David Climent, & Pablo Molinero.

Starring David Climent, Pablo Molinero, Sergi López, Ingrid Hernández, Blanca Roldán, etc.




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