Fri, Apr 20

   9:30 / Kabuki

Sun, Apr 22

   12:45 / Kabuki

Tue, Apr 24

   6:30 / PFA

New Directors

Chile/France/Argentina/Portugal, 2011, 95 min


Cristián Jiménez
Bruno Bettati, Julie Gayet, Nadia Turincev
Cristián Jiménez
Inti Briones
Soledad Salfate
Caroline Chaspoul, Eduardo Henri?quez
Diego Noguera, Natalia Galgani, Gabriela Arancibia, Trinidad González, Hugo Medina
Strand Releasing, 6140 W. Washington Boulevard, Culver City CA 90232. FAX: 310-836-7510. EMAIL:

Ticket info: The following screenings of this film are "At Rush": Sun Apr 22, 12:45

Director Cristián Jiménez brings a keen comic sense to Chilean author Alejandro Zambra’s contemporary classic novella Bonsái, crafting an existential romance with deep insight into the psychology of love, finding meaning through literature and caring for sensitive plants. Making several leaps forward and backward in time, Bonsái follows its protagonist Julio (Diego Noguera, in a wonderfully restrained performance) in his sincere but deadpan fumbling through early adulthood. Quirky, cerebral, lost and vaguely traumatized, Julio enters into the one big love of his life lying about having read Proust and oblivious that his lover Emilia (Natalia Galgani) is fibbing, too. Eight years after meeting her, Julio begins another romantic relationship with a lie when he claims he is transcribing a handwritten novel for a famous writer. In truth, he’s the one writing the novel. As it unfolds, he gradually comes to realize that he’s the book’s broken-hearted subject, pining for Emilia, and no amount of wisdom, Proust or gardening skill can bring back the bliss of his first love. Bonsái strikes the perfect balance of humor and angst, wisdom and folly, and brings home a universal emotional truth—though the story Julio tells may be idealized, delusional and partially fictional, nothing has more power to move his soul.

—Gustavus Kundahl

Co-presented by Litquake

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Cristián Jiménez

Born in Valdivia, Chile, in 1975, Cristián Jiménez longed to be a stand-up comedian but wound up studying sociology and penning short stories before embarking on a film career. After some collaborations and short films, Jiménez wrote and directed his first feature, Optical Illusions, which premiered at the San Sebastian Film Festival in 2009 and screened around the world, with a commercial release in Europe, Chile and the United States.