Sundance 2023: “Rotting in the Sun”

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Rating: 3 out of 5.

It’s important how you tell the story to ensure it’s raw, engaging and have the chance to profoundly impact you or your life. It’s fine If it achieves less as long as it’s interesting. As we live in the twenty-first century, storytelling has changed its format dramatically. What was not allowed or scrutinized in the 20th century, at least, when censorship was still alive, nowadays, graphic imagery with sexually explicit scenes fills our scenes even when it serves no purpose whatsoever.

“Rotting in the Sun”, written and directed by Sebastián Silva, follows the filmmaker throughout the film. He uses drugs, is depressed and is looking for a way to commit suicide without pain. At some point, he almost drowned but was saved by his fan and soon-to-become friend, social media influencer Jordan Fistman. Jordan offers an idea to work on some content for TV, which Silva is reluctant to even consider it. But when the TV network shows interest in a new project, he agrees to meet up with Jordan at his studio. But when Jordan is unable to locate him, his housekeeper, Vero (excellent Catalina Saavedra), shows little desire to shed light on Sebastián Silva’s disappearance.

The film, I should warn you, is filled with graphic sex scenes that really do not help in character development. Why we need them or watch up-close men’s genitals is still unclear to me. If not for all those explicit scenes, “Rotting in the Sun” would be a great film to watch for anybody. The idea itself is excellent – no doubt about that. Execution is perfect. Undoubtedly. The rest of the scenes could be easily cut out and left in the dark. However, the choice was made to leave it, which I am afraid, will distract away certain audiences from it, and, rightfully so.

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