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Released from Love

There's an old saying about how some people eat to live, while others live to eat. And it's true that some people will never be foodies -- for me, food is really just the necessary fuel to keep me going so I can write more movie reviews. Yes, it's nice to have a particularly well-prepared meal sometimes or indulge in a luscious piece of cheesecake, but that's hardly a requirement. For others, though, truly good food is far more necessary, and the act of sitting down with a loved one to share a meal is a vital ritual.

So it is in the short film Released from Love, as a wife (Edina Marcia Zinato Respeita) cooks lovingly for her husband (Mauro Pianta), offering him gourmet meals that please the eye as well as the palate. And he seems properly impressed as well as richly fed, the two of them gazing at each other with deep affection as they share their food as they have shared their lives. There's also something amiss between them, however, and as this wordless tale unfolds, the darkness of the relationship -- and what it truly means to be released from love -- are slowly revealed.

The imagery is lush and captivating -- there's no dialogue, but there doesn't need to be, as the true story is revealed to the eye. There's evil here, but it's quiet and deceptively ordinary, as well as deeply out of place in the existence of this seemingly nice, middle-aged, longtime couple. But I couldn't look away as the story played out, and the lack of dialogue is highly effective. From the same filmmaker that created Cabrito and Rosalita, this is a no less intense but very different sort of film, full of symbolism and well worth watching. And you may never look at your dinner the same way again.

The latest delectable dish. Makes you hungry, doesn't it?


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