Epitafios (TV Series 2004– ) Poster

(2004– )

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Excellent show--too bad it isn't more visible
Craig-922 November 2005
I stumbled on Epitafios while browsing through my On Demand service, looking for an episode of Curb Your Enthusiasm. Am I glad I took a chance with this intricate, twisty series. Sometimes it goes a bit too far--our serial killer has escaped one too many times to be entirely believable--but I love the characters and their interactions and the fact that no one is safe. The show shouldn't be buried on HBO-Latino. This is a show that deserves to run alongside Rome and Deadwood and other higher-profile, regular HBO series. If you haven't watched this and think that a Spanish-language series with subtitles isn't your thing, just give the first episode or two a try. I bet you'll be hooked.
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Epitaphs on headstones
jotix10018 September 2005
This series was a surprise. Being shown now in this country by HBO Latino, it was one of the best received programs in South America last year. We watched in Argentina when it made its debut, but we couldn't resist in watching it again as HBO is running the serial. The talented Alberto Lecchi and Jorge Nisco directed with assurance and panache. "Epitafios" is perhaps one of the best things ever made of this genre. The series was written by Marcelo and Walter Slavich and it cries to be shown on American television.

"Epitafios" grabs the viewer from its powerful beginning. Viewers are advised there is a lot of gore, as the people in charge of the production don't spare anything, so beware. The story holds the viewers in suspense from the first installment to the end.

The powerful cast is wonderful. Julio Chavez, plays the former police detective that is drawn back to investigate who is the serial killer who has one of the sharpest minds and keeps eliminating people that are tied to an incident that happened a few years before. Mr. Chavez is perhaps the best excuse to watch "Epitafios". Paola Krum, Cecilia Roth, Antonio Berabent, Villanueva Cosse, Lito Cruz, are seen in supporting roles, yet everyone plays as an ensemble.

"Epitafios" will not disappoint lovers of this genre.
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jotix10014 July 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Sometimes a sequel to a successful film, or a television series, does not have the same qualities that made the original work so exciting. One always braces for the worst case scenario when a different team decides to get involved in what others created with such care and style that the new work will suffer as a consequence.

Alas, that has not happened with the new "Epitafios 2", which was commissioned by HBO Latin division. The original creator, Alberto Lecchi, teams up with Daniel Barone, in the direction of the series. Marcelo and Walter Slavich wrote all the episodes of this magnificent presentation. Ivan Wyszogrod is also on board with a musical score that puts the viewer in the right mood to enjoy every moment. The cinematographer, Guillermo Zappino and his team photograph the action with elegance showing a Buenos Aires few of us get to know.

The basic premise of the series is a deranged serial killer with a double personality that is so evil and resourceful at the same time. We get to know who he is early on, so as far as the suspense goes, we are not surprised. What the viewer does not take into consideration is the way this person can kill again, and again, with such ease.

Behind this animal there are two of the best minds of the Buenos Aires police force, Renzo Marques, and his partner Marina Segal, the original detectives of the 2004 series. Renzo is a man that acts on impulses, but with his heart in the right place. Marina is another story. In this series she is seen under a new light with needs that are unorthodox. Both policemen will hunt the man that proves to be elusive, yet, he is so near them it takes them the whole series to figure out who he is.

Julio Chavez makes a great Renzo; he is full of life and doubts. Mr. Chavez, one of the best actors from Argentina convinces us he is the determined man he is, as well as a passionate person. The same can be said about the Marina of Cecilia Roth, another excellent example of an inspired actress who knows her character well, with all her defects and inner conflicts. Ms. Roth is perfect for her part. Leonardo Sbaraglia complete the trio of principals in a role that is a departure for him. Mr. Sbaraglia has worked in Spanish films for a while, but he clearly shows a different side of him in the serial.

Highly recommended for lovers of the crime and mystery genres.
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Epitafios is TOP NOTCH entertainment for the Spanish speaker or not.
agrigentosicula1 November 2005
I have been surprised about how little information about this miniseries is readily available on the internet, so I wanted to add my two cents. In all honesty: this series is so good that it's unreal. Each time I watch it I leave the room shaking my head and saying "wow" to myself. Even if I were only reading the subtitles and not understanding the Spanish I would still feel that this miniseries is AMAZING.

The writing and acting is superb.. I especially loved the intricately woven plot (the details of which I will not go into for fear of giving spoilers). 10/10.. a must watch!!!!
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Fantastic from the first sound of music to the last!
jameszr17 October 2005
Understanding only English and not liking subtitles, I was hesitant to watch this series when a friend of mine said it was fantastic. I saw there were 5 shows out of 13 in the series that were available for me to watch so I figured one wouldn't be bad. I was GLUED to the television for 250 minutes as I had to watch all 5 episodes back to back. My back was sore, my butt, I had to go to the bathroom 3 times and read the subtitles. This was THE best series I've ever seen. The music was absolutely fantastic at the opening and closing. I spent an hour just finding the soundtrack of the opening which runs 1:17. I would like to know if there indeed is the entire CD. The acting is great, the plot fantastic and this series should win an academy award. It is utterly unbelievable. Congrats to HBO for showing this series. Now, I need to locate the entire 13 episodes to buy for my library.

James Cram
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Brilliant film noir
lastliberal8 December 2005
Quite by accident, I stumbled upon the first episode of a great miniseries.

Everybody smokes and nobody calls for backup. That is an apt description of Epitafios, a 13-part miniseries that showed on HBO Signature.

But it is so much more. It has to be because it is in Spanish with English subtitles. That may turn you off and, if it does, you are missing one of the best crime dramas ever. In fact, the story is so compelling that you don't even notice the fact that it is subtitled. The acting, the music, the story will grab you like no other crime drama.

I like Tom Shales of the Post's description: Epitafios" is as gripping as its murders are ghastly, a spiraling reverberant circle of horrors that keeps widening as the bodies pile up (more than two dozen killings by the time the series ends) and the killer's motives become clear, if perverse. The film breaks rules in somewhat the tradition of Alfred Hitchcock's "Psycho": Hardly anyone in the cast seems safe from extinction and could become the killer's next conquest at any moment. No one is safe. One of the main characters bought it the first episode - when have you ever seen that happen?

This is a series that I lost sleep to see.

After five years, Julio Chávez and Cecilia Roth return in Season 2. I will have the same anticipation for each episode as I do for True blood.
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So Disappointing !!
paulv-1915 April 2018
After checking the previous reviews, I thought we were in for a treat. Unfortunately, at about episode 4, the writing devolves into a puddle of cliches, complete with absolutely idiotic detectives, and a superhuman killer. The acting is good, maybe over the top at times, but solid. I almost felt sorry for the characters as they became cartoons. Started off with a good story. A reboot would be cool, English, Spanish, Swedish. Just better writing!!
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Refreshingly Unique with Flavor
RobinCook702 September 2006
I'd never heard of this until last night when I decided to rent the first two DVD's at Blockbuster. So, the user's comment about wanting to see it on DVD can have his/her wish ... a total of 5 DVD's.

I have not finished watching all of the mini series yet, but am glad for this website. After watching the 2nd episode and loving it, I feared that this was some series leaving me with some annoying cliffhanger, so now I know I can finish watching this to the ending due to this site's user comments.

Having only watched 2 episodes so far, I'm definitely hooked. Everything from casting, acting, camera angles, music, lighting, etc., is outstanding. My only ditty of negativity is regarding the few areas of subtitles that flash too quickly to read such as when translating a newspaper headline or tombstone epitaph, but, hey, I got the DVD's, so I can hit the reverse and pause (not so for viewers seeing it on HBO in real time unless they got some special cable service). On the flip side, though, at least the subtitles are in large enough lettering I can read them on my non-widescreen older & ordinary fullscreen television (I saw a trailer on a DVD for a new foreign movie the other day and the subtitle print was so tiny I gave up trying and determined I wouldn't be renting that movie).

It took me a little while at first to get familiar with the characters ... and, trying to salt my food whilst reading subtitles I tended to miss a few things, but I simply couldn't stop watching it. The introduction art and music is stylish and very well done which helped me more with the 2nd episode viewing, but I already know I can't rely on being sure if these characters are going to be in the remaining episodes since a lead character got toasted in the first episode, which makes this miniseries have more anticipated twists than one would expect ... and is refreshing. Knocking off a character like this wasn't like watching one of Stephen King's movies where he needlessly and irritatingly knocks off just about everyone you think you care about (King's downfall I think).

My local Blockbuster (hope it's okay to mention here), had a lot of good new releases this week, but no one had touched renting this miniseries, so I am going to have lots of fun viewing this weekend. The clerks at the store had no idea what this series was, but they do now, and one of them said she was going to rent it. I am glad to see my local BB is finally starting to have more TV series!

My title comment of "refreshingly unique with flavor" definitely applies. As the various actors and actresses of the cast lit up their cigarettes I felt nostalgia of days past when movies had smokers ... real people type actors and no government activistic or politically influenced campaigned censorship to alter the flavor intended. It was just WONDERFUL!!! When the first actor lit up a smoke, my jaw almost dropped! Then, my lips started to form a smile ... and then a big grin ... I loved it! I felt giddish! This made them all more real, and the episodes I've seen aren't full of staccato forensic jargon streaming out of their mouths (I have a tough time watching Bones! I'll have to wait for that on DVD to fully appreciate it.). And, it is nice as well that the language content is kept clean of cuss words ... most refreshing and pleasant (got really sick of that with Deadwood! I've not watched past the 2nd episode of that series.). Don't get me wrong, cussing is acceptable and applicable, but in Deadwood it seemed even the actors couldn't say so many of them without seeming forced and unnatural.

Perhaps my 10 rating is premature, but after reading other users comments here, I feel confident I will not be disappointed in viewing the rest of the DVD's. I recommend this for anyone wishing to view something uniquely different and refreshing with a stylish new flavor(and doesn't mind reading subtitles).
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NinaDulce16 February 2006
I got hooked on Epitafios from the get-go. English is my first language but I also speak, read and write Spanish (my parents were portenos from Buenos Aires). I read another comment complaining that although the series was filmed in Buenos Aires, the actors do not speak in the Argentine dialect. I noticed that right away, and I was a little disappointed because I enjoy hearing Argentinians speaking Spanish...the way my parents and other family members spoke. But I understand why...this series no doubt was aired throughout South America and the story line really has nothing to do with Buenos Aires or Argentina...it could be set anywhere. But I have enjoyed seeing location shots of the city (like Recoleta)...I was just in Buenos Aires this past October.

Epitafios is over the top to be sure, and melodramatic, just as are all the Spanish novelas. But there is just something fascinating about the series and I only wish that it would last longer that 13 episodes. I love the Sopranos (I was born in NYC and raised in NJ) but I think Epitafios is just as good. I can only hope that the producers of Epitafios will bring us more good stuff in the future.

NinaDulce Clearwater FL
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Disastrous Plot Holes
fdbjr16 August 2008
Warning: Spoilers
There are some creative moments in this disaster, but they are negatived by a plot arch that contains more holes than a serving of Swiss cheese. Above all, the ramshackle story only moves forward because of some of the most feeble-minded police work you will ever see. Some examples, which are also spoilers:

In Episode 5, the villain has been thwarted in his scheduled murderous plans. Enraged, he threatens to kill someone near and dear to the detective Renzo. Now, Renzo is unmarried and childless, and lives with his widower father, a paraplegic in a wheelchair. This is his only relative - the only person who could conceivably be 'near and dear'. Does Renzo deduce his dad is the target? Ah . . . no. In fact, he doesn't even wonder about it. There is actually dialog -'who could he mean?' 'Who will be next?' Etc. Unintentionally comic, which is not where you want to be in a mystery.

But it gets worse.

By Episode 8, the police have id'd the killer. He turns out to be a patient of the psychologist who is implicated (incidentally, the dumbest psychologist in the history of drama, one who got a kid killed by persuading him to re-enter a hostage scene, because the the hostage taker was her patient and 'i will control him'. The scene of her persuading the frightened adolescent to return to the control of the hostage taker is unimaginably dumb, and repeated several times). The killer has a scheduled appointment - in an office on the second floor without an elevator. He has already murdered about seven or eight people in incredibly sadistic ways.

Do the police stake out the building? Nope. A few of them are stationed on the stairs, warned by Renzo to 'be sure'. (WHY???? Some other person may be keeping the appointment?) The killer shows up, and - of course - gets a drop on everyone, holding a knife to the psychologists's throat. He then manages to escape ON FOOT, while the terminally stupid Renzo embraces the psychologist, not bothering to call for fill and back-up units. The other police officers presumably are still waiting in the adjoining offices - because Renzo never manages to alert them to the event, even AFTER the killer has made his escape.

This goes way beyond pardonable police error or bad luck. It is moronically stupid, and converts 'Epitafios' into one of the dumbest genre shows of its type ever made.
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Should have been a 3-parter, not a 13-parter
TonyCamonte8426 May 2013
I heard a lot of good things about this series, unfortunately they don't really hold true.

It starts off decent enough. But after 4 episodes at the latest, the writers must have run out of an idea where to take the show. Instead of progressing, the story regresses and gets more ridiculous by the minute. After episode 7 everything told me to quit watching, but I continued just to be able to write this review.

The writing gets laughably bad at times, as the police do everything they can to ensure the killer gets away with everything he does, as the latter gets a new character written into the show every week to kill off. As if the police's incompetency wasn't enough, we get some more ridiculous plot lines (russian roulette, anyone?) plus some over-the-top acting.

The show has its redeeming qualities, but especially during the 2nd half of the series you have to constanly remind yourself of them in order to keep yourself from turning it off.
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Top of the top
bairbre19 December 2005
Sometimes TV series showing serial killers get stuck in that pattern of "wham, bang!" and you know the rest. Anyway, this series had people actually thinking! I am one of the many orphans left behind when "The X-Files" ended, so I wanted something that was much more than the old pattern of catching a criminal that seems so obvious to everybody, except for the stupid police officers. "Epitafios" was not only a matter of bloody scenes (which could disturb some people sometimes), it was also having personal problems, emotions and very human characters taking part in the events. You really sympathize with the people and you really want to see the end of the story, no matter what. We don't speak Spanish here in Brasil, so I had to pay attention to the subtitles too, but who cares? With a great story like that, everything is worth the trouble.
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Pretty Good...
chazview21 May 2016
Not the most intelligent crime show I've seen, but entertaining enough to hold my attention. Could easily trimmed down to 6, maybe 8, episodes. Murder after murder of characters that contributed nothing to the plot, they existed to be killed. I watched the series on HBO on my AppleTV -- I used the 10-second skip ahead function quite a bit.

At times the writers have the characters do some pretty idiotic stuff. For example, a police detective calling someone at the airport to tell them their life is in danger, but doesn't ask where in the airport he is is and tell him to stay put. It continues with the potential victim leaving the safety of the customer service desk and runs randomly through the airport to eventually hide in a restroom. In another scene the female lead gets a Skype call from the killer who gives her a message to give to the detective — she calls him on his cellphone and asks him to come over so she can tell him what the murderer said… ummm, something urgent related to an ongoing mass murder investigation and you can't just tell him over the phone, the one you're already talking to him on? I found myself saying and thinking the phrase "what idiots" many times throughout the series.

Still, there's enough of a plot to watch it through to the end. I do like how they identify the killer around the 4th episode, instead of waiting until the end and just pick a character — more enjoyable when the viewer knows and watches those investigating figure it out.

They talk fast, the subtitles flash by — around episode 3 my brain seemed to adapt and there was a lot less skipping back to read what I missed.

Season 1 didn't exactly motivate me to dive into season 2 — maybe someday when there's nothing else to watch I'll take a look. I'd like to see a version of this story re-done by the people behind the series "24" :-)
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Weak opening leaves me disappointed
pegd-125 November 2012
Warning: Spoilers
Had read somewhere that this HBO production was engrossing, a good detective story...HBO has such a good reputation when it comes to drama, that I thought this was a good one to watch... First episode: It really bugged me that the two detectives investigating the address of the mysterious caller don't call for backup...Then, in a flashback, the shrink convinces the young student, who is shaking in his boots,to return with her to talk to the killer...I couldn't continue with the story after that...How stupid is this shrink? That unbelievable action turned me off completely...And I had read such good things about this series...Maybe I didn't give the film a chance having watched so little of it...But after reading and watching so many mysteries of this genre, I can spot a lemon...The script is weak, the acting average...
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Great Mini-Series
phyzzique25 December 2005
This mini-series is so good I can't believe it. It is as good as Britain's 'Prime Suspect' and better than our 'Sopranos'. I relied on the subtitles, but no matter, the acting is superb! The city of Buenos Aires is magnificent-looking; no doubt to highlight the depravity of the monstrous killer. There are 13 episodes.......trust me.......after you watch the first one, you will be hooked and you will want to watch the subsequent ones as soon as possible. This saga is very suspenseful and at times down-right scary....So be afraid.....be very afraid. The production values are first-rate. HBO is to be congratulated for bringing this series to the small screen.
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Flawed but still enjoyable
bachbeet29 November 2005
Warning: Spoilers
Spoiler warning (you might figure some things out from this review): The flaw lies in the premise of having a 13 episode mini-series be about a serial killer. In this series, it means that the killer has to succeed quite a bit and the police come out looking like total incompetents. They mess up so many times and the killer ends up killing so many people I lost count. I thought it might be a good idea to move to Argentina and take up a life of crime if the cops there are so terrible. This flaw was compounded by the ending and the final murder he commits. I would have preferred that it not end that way. It is basically a very pessimistic ending.

Having said all that, I did enjoy watching it for its realism and the war of wills and wits.
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LOVE it by why change Argentineans?
julia-rendon11 November 2005
I have to say that I am loving the series in terms of subject matter and the idea.....but I am disappointed that (probably to become an HBO production) they made the actors change their Argentinean accent to a generic accent thinking that people from other nationalities would understand and identify with the series better. I think that that was such a bad idea not only because the actors seem forced when trying to talk like the regular "Jose Perez," but also because it seems ridiculous to me that a series that clearly takes place in Buenos Aires pretends that people from there speak with another type of accent that they don't. That makes the series unreal. I find it unfortunate that HBO which is a Hollywood-independent, great production company wants to "Hollywicize" itself and make people think that all Latins talk alike, think alike, act alike and have the same accents!!!! Argentienans have made such great productions, movies, series, etc...they should not change their accents/ways just to please a bunch of Americans that don't understand the culture.
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Love this show!
lisabecka5 November 2006
I'm re-watching the series on DVD and love it just as much as the first time. Yes, the body count gets ridiculously high, and I can't believe there wouldn't be more detectives working on such a high-profile case, and Renzo would have been replaced around victim #10 or so, but all the characters have so much passion! Also, as a writer, I'm fascinated when other writers break rules, like bringing in a central character (Marina) fully halfway through the series. And how often is the dramatic and romantic lead a paunchy little guy with a bald spot? My favorite character is Renzo's dad, who is smarter than everyone else in the show put together, including his son. Does anyone know if there's a second season out there?
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A series that could be better!
marcoaureliogv21 October 2004
Since it was filmed in Argentina, it could be considered as a good production. However, most of its actors sometimes do exaggerate when acting. I think they forgot that they were in a movie, not in a stage, like a Shakespearian drama. About the movie itself, I was kind of disappointed. Too many clichés and it's incredible that how bad the Argentinian Police is. Their detectives are very stupid because they never can catch the serial killer. On the contrary, that poor gay guy always make them foolish as well as kill anyone who crosses his way. Well, since I started watching that series, I might have to watch it until its very ending... What a sacrifice!
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Better than 24 and Lost!
zoel14200010 December 2005
Warning: Spoilers
It's just great! I love HBO's series, but Epitafios was one of my favorites. It should be on your must see list. t has all the ingredients of a successful television series: an incredible police detective, a serial killer who enjoys torturing his victims before killing them. It was filmed and produced in Buenos Aires, Argentina. A city with European characteristics which makes the film more intense and interesting. After watching the first episode you won't be able to wait until HBO airs the next episode. I've read that the series made a hug impact on Latin American viewers that a second season is on the way.
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Killing as art ... classic cult crime-horror series from Argentina
ok_english_bt21 May 2020
The storylines of 'Epitafios' remind me of some of the most gruesome Scandi-noir crime dramas ('The Killing', 'The Bridge' etc.), while this Argentinian series is filmed rather like a Dario Argento giallo horror flick, each kill 'staged' like a work of art! Sometimes for me they go too far with the violence, and some of the plot twists are quite implausible, but Epitafios works on lots of levels, suspenseful, dramatic, beautiful to watch, well acted and some nice interplay between the main characters. Season 2 is even better than Season 1, lots of intricacies in the story and fantastic performances by the leads (Cecilia Roth as detective Marina Sega doesn't appear until halfway through Season 1 for some reason, and immediately takes the whole thing up a notch!).

Difficult to know if they ever will make another season, particularly given the way the story was left in 2009, but I hope this cult series achieves the exposure it deserves.
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Super entertaining and moving if you ignore a few things
borgolarici15 September 2019
Super entertaining if you ignore a few things, namely Marina the female badass cop with a tormented past (she doesn't have much screen time luckily) and some plot holes.

Once you get past these you will have the time of your life: the pacing is good, the atmosphere is gloomy and thrilling and Renzo is a very good main character (not a perfect cop but the way he treats Laura is surprisingly tender and natural for a movie). Bruno is a great villain too
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Marianita26 February 2006
I don't know who told that actors did not talk in an Argentinian way!!!! Have you been in Argentina? Do you speak Spanish as your first language???? I Do. I am an Spanish speaker as a first language, I have been in Argentina many times, I have friends in Buenos Aires, and I can tell you that actors talk in the series just that they talk in their real life and like everybody in Argentina... well, in Buenos Aires. This is one of my favorites TV series (mini) I have seen it 3 times, I recorded it on my VCR (yes!!! I still have one!!!) but I am waiting for the HBO's DVD on stores. HBO should repeat Epitafios more than once a year. And I am sorry about English speakers... if you talk Spanish you enjoy all the thriller in a better way.
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pleasant surprise
shanemcarty6 April 2010
I only started watching this show on Australia's SBS because I was learning Spanish. I soon became addicted and couldn't wait for the next episode. Epitafios has qualities of a popular Silence of the Lambs style horror but it is infused with a wonderful Operatic style that, like true Opera, can absorb the melodrama. I had no knowledge of the series length and assumed it would end with the episode I was watching, only to find a turn or two before what appeared to be the finale. Great stuff! After every show I was eagerly awaiting the next. Also has some fantastic scenes of Beunos Airies that made me wish I was back in that beautiful city.
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unique_monique8 December 2005
I discovered Epitafios by accident when it first aired on HBO Latino. (HBO really dropped the ball by not promoting it better.) I was immediately hooked and have watched all 13 episodes numerous times. It also introduces many talented actors previously unknown to American audiences.

There are many, many things I love about this series... First of all the plot is intricately woven with lots of suspense - who will be next and why?! Secondly, I love that the actors lacked the slick fake polish of Hollywood. These characters smoke, they curse, they make mistakes but they have real souls, depth and feelings.

Julio Chavez does a wonderful job portraying Renzo, the ex-cop with a tortured soul. He doesn't need much dialog... the tender touch of a his hand to Laura's face, the tiredness in his eyes, a shrugged shoulder all speak louder then words. The character isn't a perfect man and doesn't pretend to be... he cares, he hurts, he loves... Julio brings him to life and makes him real. (I'm sure I'm not alone when I say that his open shirts were an incredible turn on!) Be sure and check out some of his other work, "The Red Bear", "Senora Nadie" and "A King and his Movie" are all out on DVD.

Argentina and it's people have lived through some very hard times - I read somewhere they are all addicted to coffee and psychoanalysis. It seems a shame that such a "rich" country suffers so. Hopefully things will change for the better, perhaps through the film industry... Reflection on the past is important but hope for tomorrow is time better spent.

I've seen several movies from Argentina and there is something haunting and alluring about the old crumbling buildings and the people. Amid the hopelessness there is still beauty and life. People there are not willing to lay down and die. I'd love to see it in person and hope to see more on screen in the mean time.
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