Starring: Marta Haller, Amaia Salamanca, Nicolás Furtado
Director: Alejandro Montiel
Running Time: 103 mins
Perdida is an Argentinian film about a detective who sets out on a fresh search for answers following the disappearance of her best friend 14 years ago in Patagonia.
While it’s not the world’s most innovative or unpredictable thriller, there’s something simple and effective about Perdida that makes it a thoroughly enjoyable watch regardless. With a likable lead performance from Marta Haller, as well as decent pacing and intrigue throughout, what the film lacks in edge-of-your-seat thrills it more than makes up for with enjoyable and engaging mystery.
And that’s where I’ll start, because although I can’t say that Perdida is a film that ever really had me biting my nails, or furiously looking for clues to solve the case, it’s a solid and consistently entertaining crime-mystery movie that forgoes the need for any excessively complicated intrigue that often proves the downfall of so many others.
Sure, that means the film loses points for originality and ambition, and many of its key twists and revelations are either incredibly predictable or completely non-sensical, but the film pushes forth with a simple and engaging premise, taking the barebones of any detective thriller and making it work like clockwork, something that makes for a solidly enjoyable watch.
As a result, where it falls down in genuinely exciting and deep intrigue, the film stands above many others in its genre as you’re able to grasp pretty much everything throughout, and with the exception of the odd random twist, it’s a simple and easy-to-understand thriller that’s far more pleasant to watch than something that goes for something complex, and falls flat on its face.
Another reason why I liked Perdida so much is that, along with its pleasantly simple screenplay, it’s a well-paced and generally well-directed movie. Again, it doesn’t quite have the heavy, oppressive Gone Girl-style atmosphere that it’s often going for, but it zips along pleasantly with a simple yet effective structure, holding my attention right the way through, and even featuring the odd exciting chase or action sequence from time to time.
Finally, the performances here are pretty good too. Marta Haller is a likable and convincing lead, playing a competent police detective with a whole lot of personal investment in the case at hand. She doesn’t quite evoke the emotion that would have made the film quite a bit more enthralling, but she leads the film well alongside a couple of other entertaining turns.
Overall, I found Perdida a pretty pleasant and enjoyable film. It might not be the bold, intense or nail-biting thriller that it often wants to be, but thanks to a simple and solid structure and plot, as well as good pacing and a great lead performance, it’s a lot of fun regardless, and that’s why I’m giving it a 7.5.