By the same director as Anchor and Hope, 10,000 Km had a lot to live up to due to my previously high praise for Carlos Marques-Maarcet’s work. Starring Natalia Tena and David Verdaguer, two talented actors also in Anchor and Hope, the Spanish romantic drama follows Alex and Sergi as they try to maintain their relationship long distance. Although not something I would watch on repeat, the realistic portrayal of the struggles of long-distance relationships both through the filming techniques and the skilful acting makes it a noteworthy film.
“The sexual intimacy and natural connection they are able to show onscreen is extremely impressive”
From the very graphic opening scene, it was clear that these two actors have worked closely with each other; the sexual intimacy and natural connection they are able to show onscreen is extremely impressive. The script itself is apt in showing the strength of their relationship prior to Alex’s move abroad as the mixture of overt sexual talk, teasing comments and comedic moments even in the first few minutes of the film set up the strength of their love that had clearly developed over time. Tena and Verdaguer successfully establish the image of a typical long-term couple and it felt so real watching them interact.
“Nothing is lost through reading the subtitles due to the talent of the actors”
As the film is in Spanish, I thought this would be rather alienating and make it harder to connect emotionally but even without the words, the filming techniques and the actors’ facial expressions alone could have portrayed all that you needed to know: nothing is lost through reading the subtitles due to the talent of the actors.
10.000 Km is a very revealing film with nothing hidden from the spectator so I felt uncomfortable at points as it felt as though I was intruding on very private moments between the characters. The camera shots and angles add to this sense of intrusion and there is one moment in particular which was too close for comfort, where Alex and Sergi’s sexual frustration is taken out on a Skype call. These parts of the film definitely make it one not to watch with your parents, but I respect Marques-Maarcet’s decision to include such intimate moments as it ensured that these difficult bits of a long-distance relationship aren’t just avoided and makes the film even more realistic.
“Marques-Maarcet manages to further capture the frustration of a relationship based on technology”
A lot of it is actually filmed by the characters themselves through skype calls, google maps and shots of their laptop screens. It was irritating enough for me watching the buffering of the Skype calls in the film so this was very effective in conveying the complications of going long distance. By also splitting the screen in half with live footage on one side and google maps on the other with only the sound of the mouse clicks, Marques-Maarcet manages to further capture the frustration of a relationship based on technology.
One of the things I didn’t particularly like was the use of day markers to show the passage of time. Although this wasn’t that big of a deal, for me it seemed a bit oversimplified and obvious, breaking up the flow of the film but it did work to show just how long they had been separated.
Having been in a long-distance relationship myself, I think that 10,000 Km conveyed the frustration and complications of such a situation. It evoked a lot of empathy for the characters and, for those who have endured such a relationship, it was very easy to take sides through watching the situations each character finds themselves in. Although heart-breaking at points seeing the struggles that they faced, it is an important film as it addresses a lot of issues that people wouldn’t know about if they haven’t experienced a long-distance relationship themselves.
10,000 Km will be available on DVD and Digital Download from 5th November.
Featured Image courtesy of Lastor Media and La Panda via IMDb.