Many people said that Bartolomé Moré was too big for the screen. But after 11 years of working on the script and raising finance, director Jorge Luis Sánchez has proved them wrong with one of the Cuban film industry’s best biopics.
This does not vaunt itself as a master work but by mixing fact and legend, Sánchez manages in his first full length feature to define the Benny that so many people still remember. It’s all there, with no hint of hagiography: the musical genius who couldn’t read a note; the generous, quarrelsome country boy, the womaniser and drunk whose life and career were cut short by cirrhosis of the liver.
The cast is classy. The young Renny Arozarena makes you forget his lack of physical similarity as with sheer voice and gesture he presents an astonishing Benny. Enrique Molina, always professional, plays Olimpio the taxi driver. Mario Guerra is impressive in his first serious role as the solidly constructed, tragic-comic figure of Monchy, the jealous musician. Isabel Santos is convincing as the opportunistic, sensual cabaret artist. Laura de la Uz and other major names also make appearances. It is no accident that the film has been chosen as Cuba’s Oscar entry this yea... read more
+ information pág. 150-153 The H Book 2007 08