House Logo
Explore categories +

Catalina Saavedra (#110 of 1)

New York Film Festival 2010: Old Cats

Comments Comments (...)

New York Film Festival 2010: <em>Old Cats</em>
New York Film Festival 2010: <em>Old Cats</em>

If nothing else, Old Cats, the latest drama from Chilean directors Pedro Peirano and Sebastián Silva (previously they collaborated on The Maid), is distinguished by one scene near its climax that manages to wring a surprising amount of heart-stopping suspense out of the simple act of an elderly woman trying to go down the stairs. As we see her struggling mightily whenever she moves her feet down a notch, each step becomes a life-or-death proposition, as thunderous in impact as the most overt act of physical violence.

The sequence works not necessarily because of any special cinematic innovation on the part of its directors, but because of how well Peirano and Silva have been able to involve us in the drama of its characters up to that point. We hold our breaths with each step that elderly woman takes because we care about what happens to her.