The movie by Cesc Gay, which has recently succeeded in major film festivals, tells us the relationship between two friends who have to say good bye
True friendship, without complexes or complacency. That’s what Truman is all about. Cesc Gay’s last proposal was the major winner at the Goya Awards celebrated last February, as it got five prizes out of the six it was nominated for.
Tomás, masterfully played by Javier Cámara, leaves his family in Canada to fly to Madrid. In the Spanish capital, he knocks on the door of an astounded Julián, lifelong friend and struggling actor, who has just decided to stop fighting against a terminal cancer. Together, they will spend four days trying to find a solution to Julián’s greatest concern: who will stay with his dog Truman once he finishes his journey in this life.
Truman conquers and touches the viewer from the very beginning. The topic didn’t make it easy. Tackling death never is, and Gay succeeds with a flawless sensitiveness that doesn’t need a grandiose rhetoric or flowery tokens of love to move the audience. It moves through two exquisite actors. An always charming Darín, able to say more with a look than many others with a whole script. And Javier Cámara, who brings us all into Tomás’ mind without even moving a muscle.
Julián is the bravery; Tomás, the generosity. And they both needed to spend these days together, even if they didn’t know it before. Julián, trying to leave everything well tied up and live as naturally as possible the last blow life stroke against him. Tomás, fighting to understand a decision he would love to keep ignoring. With them in this journey, Paula, embodied by Argentinian actress Dolores Fonzi, and Truman, the dog, essential guiding thread for this dramatic comedy.
And everything is brought to us by details and subtleties: the looks between the characters, conversations that could seem trivial in another context, and a hug in Amsterdam that will hunt the viewer days after leaving the movie theater.
This is a movie of sweet tears and bitter smiles. One is constantly trying to decide if it’s time to laugh or to cry. It is no surprise that the film succeeded at San Sebastian International Film Festival and at the Goya Awards, as it is totally understandable that it keeps bringing people to the movies even months after having been released.