Nestled within the array of new movies in Lincoln Center’s series New Directors/New Films could be found the odd amalgam that is Alex Rivera’s Sleep Dealer. Almost completely in Spanish, set in the future and made for less than most studio productions will spend on titles or a single actor, Rivera’s film is a miracle of sweat, determination and ten year’s hard work. While not as slick as a Hollywood science fiction, there have been few (if any) movies as smart in the issues he addresses through science fiction, perhaps since Blade Runner. Rivera’s focus is not perhaps as epic as Ridley Scotts' groundbreaker, but his vision is fundamentally more human. There have been few movies, documentary or narrative, which more challengingly address issues of globalization, migration, water issues, the nature of disembodied human contact, the cyber era, with as much heart and thoughtful political activism.
Director: Alex Rivera, Release: 2008, Runtime: 90 min
- Keith Miller
(*Image: Alex Rivera, Sleep Dealer, film still, 2008, ©Alex Rivera)