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Lion's Den review

A gritty step-change from director Pablo Trapero’s Rolling Family, this detached but intense character portrait set in an Argentinian women’s prison follows a possible murderer, Julia (Martina Gusman), in her fight to keep the son that her mother, and the system, want to take away.

No melodrama, no thriller twists, just Trapero’s camera sticking to his lead actress like sweat.

Gusman is sullenly magnificent; you can’t fault the movie’s realism either, shot in an actual prison and soberly reflecting some acute social problems.

But the movie’s muggy pace makes you feel that you’ve served every day of Julia’s sentence with her.
 

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