Neruda (film)

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Neruda (film).png
Film poster
Directed byPablo Larraín
Written byGuillermo Calderón
Produced by
  • Renan Artukmac
  • Peter Danner
  • Fernando Del Nido
  • Juan Pablo García
  • Axel Kuschevatzky
  • Juan de Dios Larraín
  • Ignacio Rey
  • Gaston Rothschild
  • Jeff Skoll
  • Alex Zito
CinematographySergio Armstrong
Edited byHervè Schneid
Music byFederico Jusid
Distributed by
Release dates
  • 13 May 2016 (2016-05-13) (Cannes)
  • 11 August 2016 (2016-08-11) (Chile)
  • 4 January 2017 (2017-01-04) (France)
Running time
107 minutes
  • Chile
  • Argentina
  • France
  • Spain[1][2]
  • United States[3]
Box office$1.9 million[4][5]

Neruda is a 2016 internationally co-produced biographical drama film directed by Pablo Larraín. Mixing history and fiction, the film shows the dramatic events of the suppression of Communists in Chile in 1948 and how the poet, diplomat, politician and Nobel Prize winner Pablo Neruda had to go on the run, eventually escaping on horseback over the Andes.


In 1946, Chile's president Gabriel González Videla wins the election with the support of the Communists, but later turns against them, banning the party and ordering mass arrests. Senator Pablo Neruda, a former ambassador and renowned poet, speaks out against the repression, putting himself in danger. With his wife Delia, he attempts to flee to Argentina through the mountains, but they are turned back at the border and forced to go into hiding.

Óscar Peluchonneau, a young policeman, is tasked with hunting down Neruda. To catch him, Peluchonneau believes he needs to know him, so he studies Neruda's life and poetry. Meanwhile, Neruda makes surprise appearances, leaving volumes of his poetry with people to mobilize resistance. A game of cat and mouse ensues, with Peluchonneau always a step behind. When the hunt becomes too close, Neruda's friends arrange for smugglers to take him over the border on horseback.

Delia stays behind and is interrogated by Peluchonneau. She tells him that every story has a primary character, and in this story, the cop is secondary. This remark unnerves Peluchonneau, who is never certain of his inner identity. Delia destroys his confidence by saying that Neruda, with his poetry and political commitment, is reality and will endure, but Peluchonneau is merely a fiction.

As Neruda's group climbs through the wintry forests towards the border, Peluchonneau follows, but he cannot catch up. He dies on a snow-covered mountaintop, bludgeoned by his own indigenous companions. Neruda later finds his corpse. Peluchonneau's hold on reality has ended, and he has melted back into fiction. Neruda flies to Paris, where he is welcomed by his friend Pablo Picasso and becomes a media sensation. During a press conference, Neruda mentions Peluchonneau's name, allowing him to live on through memory.


Cast of Neruda receiving Premio Fénix 2016 for Best Picture


It was screened in the Directors' Fortnight section at the 2016 Cannes Film Festival.[6][7] It was selected as the Chilean entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 89th Academy Awards but it was not nominated.[8][9]

After the world premiere at Cannes on 13 May 2016,[7] The Orchard and Wild Bunch acquired U.S and French distribution rights, respectively.[10][11] It was shown at the Telluride Film Festival on 4 September 2016[12] and the Toronto International Film Festival on 8 September 2016.[13][14] It screened at the New York Film Festival on 5 October 2016.[1]

The film was released in Chile on 11 August 2016 by 20th Century Fox,[15][16] in the United States on 16 December 2016,[17][18] and in France on 4 January 2017.[19]

Critical response[edit]

On the review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, 93% of 155 critics' reviews are positive, with an average rating of 7.7/10. The website's consensus reads, "Inventive, intelligent, and beautifully filmed, Neruda transcends the traditional biopic structure to look at the meaning beyond the details of its subject's life."[20] Metacritic, which uses a weighted average, assigned the film a score of 82 out of 100, based on 28 critics, indicating "universal acclaim".[21]

Awards and accolades[edit]

List of accolades
Award / Film Festival Date of Ceremony Category Recipient(s) Result
Golden Globe Awards[22] 8 January 2017 Best Foreign Language Film Nominated
Houston Film Critics Society 6 January 2017 Best Foreign Language Film Nominated

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Neruda". New York Film Festival. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  2. ^ Jay Weissberg (13 May 2016). "Film Review: 'Neruda'". Variety. Retrieved 9 January 2017.
  3. ^ "Neruda (2016)". British Film Institute. Retrieved 31 March 2018.
  4. ^ "Neruda". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 12 March 2017.
  5. ^ "Neruda". The Numbers. Retrieved 12 March 2017.
  6. ^ "Fortnight 2016: The 48th Directors' Fortnight Selection". Quinzaine des Réalisateurs. Archived from the original on 20 April 2016. Retrieved 19 April 2016.
  7. ^ a b Nancy Tartaglione (19 April 2016). "Cannes: Directors' Fortnight 2016 Lineup – Laura Poitras' 'Risk', Pablo Larrain's 'Neruda', Paul Schrader's 'Dog Eat Dog'". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 19 April 2016.
  8. ^ Fleming, Mike Jr. (12 September 2016). "Multiple Larrain Storms In Oscar Forecast With 'Neruda' & 'Jackie'". Deadline. Retrieved 12 September 2016.
  9. ^ Mango, Agustin (13 September 2016). "Oscars: Chile Selects 'Neruda' for Foreign-Language Category". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  10. ^ Verheven, Beatrice (14 May 2016). "The Orchard Acquires North American Rights to Gael Garcia Bernal's 'Neruda'". The Wrap. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  11. ^ Hopewell, John (4 May 2016). "Cannes: Pablo Larrain's Gael Garcia Bernal-Starrer 'Neruda' Closes France, U.K., Germany, Italy". Variety. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  12. ^ Hammond, Pete (1 September 2016). "Telluride Film Festival Lineup: 'Sully', 'La La Land', 'Arrival', 'Bleed For This' & More". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 1 September 2016.
  13. ^ "Neruda". Toronto International Film Festival. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  14. ^ Raup, Jordan (26 July 2016). "TIFF 2016 Line-Up Includes 'Nocturnal Animals,' 'La La Land,' 'American Pastoral,' and More". The Film Stage. Retrieved 26 July 2016.
  15. ^ "Gael García Bernal ante debut de "Neruda" en Cannes: "Llego con un poco de pánico"". (in Spanish). 12 May 2016. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  16. ^ Billington, Alex (11 May 2016). "First Trailer for Pablo Larraín's 'Neruda' Playing at Cannes This Year". Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  17. ^ Newman, Nick (21 October 2016). "U.S. Trailer for Pablo Larraín's 'Neruda' Finds Gael García Bernal on the Prowl". The Film Stage. Retrieved 18 December 2016.
  18. ^ A. Lincoln, Ross (21 October 2016). "'Neruda' Trailer: Life On The Run For Chilean Poet & Political Firebrand". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 18 December 2016.
  19. ^ "Neruda". Wild Bunch. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  20. ^ "Neruda". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango Media. Retrieved 23 December 2021. Edit this at Wikidata
  21. ^ "Neruda". Metacritic. Fandom, Inc. Retrieved 23 December 2021.
  22. ^ "Golden Globes 2017: The Complete List of Nominations". The Hollywood Reporter. 12 December 2016. Retrieved 26 December 2016.

External links[edit]