So it really is true. There is such a thing as a specifically Latin storytelling tradition. Medem and Almodovar are the touchtones of it and then it extends to smaller, fledging, talents.
I am kidding. I knew this to be true. It all started with Cervantes and his Quixote, a book about books, and it bookended with Borges’ short stories about kabbalistic symmetry, parralel realities, and everything in between. (Check out how our ‘master of it all’ here is Jewish).
The world spun has to be magical in clear ways. Sometimes the magic has no source, it’s the given world, other times the characters themselves are magic. Here we have the latter, but put up against the ‘natural’ magic of the world, the former. So characters are deemed ‘highly lucky’ and they go against the odds at play, but those odds are capricious inconveniently.
Along the way, there are parallel pasts between antagonists, overlayed realities, nested levels of relationships, and a magical phrase that saves a life in one reality, but fails to do the same in another.
Watch this because it is much richer than I can describe here. That business about photographing people to appropriate their luck and then using those photos as currency is clever. Betting a picture of your lover and then risking all of your life to get it back, that’s sublime. Poetic?