Gael García Bernal Gets a Conscience in the Even the Rain Trailer

The trailer for the Spanish submission to the Oscars Even the Rain brings up an interesting dilemma. In theory, it's great to make films with a social conscience that inform a wider audience about historical and global injustice, but what happens when you have to bow to exploitation just to get the film made? In this film, Gael García Bernal plays a director making a film about Christopher Columbus' imperialism who realizes he may need to turn a blind eye to modern day exploitation in order to complete the movie. Tense revolutionary violence and pensive hillside contemplation ensue.

See, the problem is that Bernal decides to shoot his film in a small Bolivian town since labor, housing and food are all "negotiable." While the film is shooting, the inhabitants start to approach a revolution against the government, which is taking control of the water supply, making even the most basic resource unaffordable to the population. When one of Bernal's key actors becomes a key voice in the resistance, he's faced head on with his own ethical boundaries and the similarity between the film he's making and the current political climate.

The film itself looks fine, though it's hard to tell from the trailer whether it treats the complicated questions it raises with thoughtful subtlety or a simple, irony-laced through-line. That said, the questions it raises are indeed interesting, and at the very least, it probably won't be anywhere near as nauseatingly manipulative as Bernal's other upcoming film.

Verdict: Sold.