Facing Life and Death
Mexican filmmaker Claudia Sainte-Luce was deeply inspired by an encounter she had as a young woman. In her affecting film, Los insólitos peces gato, she tells this cherished story, admitting to a selective memory that has favored the more heartening details.
When Claudia is treated for appendicitis, she meets Martha, a lively and warm mother of four, whose serious medical condition is only gradually revealed. Fond of the young woman, she invites Claudia to join their chaotic household.
In a seemingly effortless flow, the film hints at the responsibilities of absent men and vividly depicts the paradoxes of living with a deadly disease. In a peculiar balance between childishness and enforced maturity, Martha’s children have become experts at handling her grim symptoms, yet the smallest annoyance still has them whining for their mommy.
Ultimately, we are reminded that, although alone when facing death, opening ourselves up to encounters and knowing how to recognize the right people, can make life much sweeter.Aurélie Godet