Promotional film poster
|Directed by||Francis Ford Coppola|
|Produced by||Francis Ford Coppola|
|Written by||Francis Ford Coppola|
Klaus Maria Brandauer
|Music by||Osvaldo Golijov|
|Cinematography||Mihai Mălaimare Jr.|
|Edited by||Walter Murch|
|Distributed by||Alta Films|
|Box office||$2.6 million|
Tetro is a 2009 American-Argentine drama film written, directed and produced by Francis Ford Coppola and starring Vincent Gallo, Alden Ehrenreich and Maribel Verdú. Filming took place in 2008 in Buenos Aires, Patagonia, and Spain. Tetro received a limited release in the United States on June 11, 2009.
Set in Argentina with a high content of film noir, this story of the reunion of two brothers follows the rivalries born out of creative differences passed down through generations of an artistic Italian immigrant family.
- Vincent Gallo as Tetro, the protagonist. Coppola said of his casting choice, "I know choosing Vincent Gallo to star in my film will raise a few eyebrows, but I'm betting that seeing him in the role will open some eyes." Prior to Gallo, Matt Dillon and Joaquin Phoenix were up for the role.
- Alden Ehrenreich as Bennie, Tetro's younger brother
- Maribel Verdú as Miranda, Tetro's girlfriend
- Silvia Pérez as Silvana
- Rodrigo de la Serna as José
- Érica Rivas as Ana
- Sofia Gala as Maria Luisa
- Carmen Maura as Alone, a literary critic and Tetro's mentor. The character was originally written to be male, and actor Javier Bardem was previously attached to the role. Coppola explained the change in sex, "As I read and reread (the script), I felt that the interaction between the two characters would be far more intriguing if they were of the opposite sex."
- Klaus Maria Brandauer as Alfie/Carlo Tetrocini, Tetro's father
- Mike Amigorena as Abelardo
- Lucas Di Conza as Young Tetro
- Adriana Mastrángelo as Angela
- Leticia Brédice as Josefina
- Francesca De Sapio as Amalia
- Susana Giménez as Herself
In February 2007, Coppola announced that he would produce and direct the film Tetro, based on a script that he had written while editing Youth Without Youth. Production was scheduled to begin in Buenos Aires, Argentina in late 2007. Coppola was attracted to Argentina as a location, "I knew Argentina has a great cultural, artistic, literary, musical, cinema tradition, and I like those kinds of atmospheres very much because you usually find creative people to work with." Production did not begin as scheduled, and by March 2008, Vincent Gallo and Maribel Verdú joined the cast. The Spanish company Tornasol Films and the Italian company BIM Distribuzione signed with the director to co-produce the film. Production began on March 31, 2008 with a budget of $5 million, with Coppola using the production style similar to his previous film Youth Without Youth. Filming took place in La Boca in Buenos Aires and other parts of the capital city. Filming also followed in the Andean foothills in Patagonia and at the Ciudad de la Luz studios in Alicante, Spain. Production concluded in June.
In May 2008, during filming in Argentina, the Argentina Actors Association, an actors' union, claimed that production of Tetro was shut down due to union members working on the film without a contract. According to The Hollywood Reporter, "Local press reports say that script changes and communication problems between the multi-national cast and crew have extended filming days beyond regularly scheduled hours, and that some of the Argentine actors are still not certain of their salary." The director's spokesperson, Kathleen Talbert, denied that production was halted, saying, "There are no holds on shooting, no problem with actors. In fact, the majority of the Argentine actors have already wrapped the shooting." By the end of the month, the union said the issue was resolved, reporting, "The lawyers for the producers presented the necessary documentation and recognized the errors that they had made. So now they are able to continue with production." In contrast, Talbert reiterated that there had been no issue, and production was never halted.
The cast includes Rodrigo de la Serna, Leticia Brédice, Mike Amigorena and Jean-Francois Casanovas. The film features a brief cameo by Argentinian film star Susana Giménez in her first performance after a ten-year hiatus from film acting.
The film received generally positive reviews from critics. On Metacritic, the film has an average metascore of 65 based on 26 reviews. Rotten Tomatoes reported that 71% of critics gave positive reviews based on 100 reviews with an average score of 6.3/10. Overall, the Rotten Tomatoes consensus was: "A complex meditation on family dynamics, Tetro's arresting visuals and emotional core compensate for its uneven narrative."
Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times gave the film 3 stars, praising the film for being "boldly operatic, involving family drama, secrets, generations at war, melodrama, romance and violence". Ebert also praised Vincent Gallo's performance and claimed Alden Ehrenreich is "the new Leonardo DiCaprio". Todd McCarthy of Variety gave the film a B+ judging that "when [Coppola] finds creative nirvana, he frequently has trouble delivering the full goods." Richard Corliss of Time magazine gave the film a mixed review, praising Ehrenreich's performance, but claiming Coppola "has made a movie in which plenty happens but nothing rings true."
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