Blame it on Fidel! [subtitled]

Blame it on Fidel!

Of the movies I’ve written about so far, I’m going to pick Blame it on Fidel! as the one I’ve enjoyed the least.

I won’t say it’s a “bad” movie in the sense of being offensive or making the world a worse place (like some film that propagandizes for right wing politics or other forms of hate). Or even that it’s terribly made. As always I’m just writing about my subjective reaction, and it’s possible a fair amount of the problem may be that I wasn’t in the mood for a movie tonight, or at least not for this kind of movie. But the bottom line is I was bored for pretty much this whole film.

Blame it on Fidel! is the story of a little girl—about nine or ten?—in France in the 1970s. Her family is involved in various leftist political causes, which impacts her life by such things as keeping her parents away for extended periods of time (and less able to give her a lot of attention even when they are around), and making her get used to fewer and fewer luxuries as they adopt a more frugal lifestyle. She alternately resents these things, tries to understand her parents’ politics, opposes her parents’ politics, allies herself with her parents’ politics, and so on. Mostly she doesn’t like the effect it’s all having on her life, and mostly she doesn’t understand it.

That has the potential to be interesting. And there are other elements to the movie that could be thought-provoking, like the parents clashing over the mother focusing on a specific issue (abortion) when the father thinks it’s unwise to do so. Or the matter of to what extent the father is overdoing his commitment to worthy causes to make up for his guilt in not doing enough when his sister and her husband were fighting against Franco’s regime in Spain (for which the husband was executed).

But I just never cared about any of the characters more than minimally. I’m not sure why. There is not all that much of a storyline to the movie that connects these various issues, so I’m sure that was a factor.

Without the extra effort of having to deal with subtitles this film would have been below average for me. Having subtitles drops it even a notch below that.

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