Nine Queens is an interesting little con film from Argentina, directed by Fabian Bielinsky, and featuring a plot pulled right off the hustling streets. It’s a pretty good film, with all the parts in great, functioning order; very little to dislike about it. But really, I’m just spitballing here to fill up space; as much as I liked this one, and I did like it, it left me with very little to say about it, which in and of itself might be saying more than one would think.
The plot deals with con man Marcos, who runs into a fellow small-time street swindler named Juan and saves him from getting arrested. He quickly pulls him into a scam he’s been wanting to get going, involving a rich big-wig about to leave the country, and a set of rare misprinted stamps known as the Nine Queens. Of course, things don’t go as planned, and they have to make some improvisational choices along the way, but that’s half the fun; the unpredictability of the plot (well, somewhat; maybe it was just from me seeing films like Shade and The Score and whatnot, but I could see the final plot twist coming a little while off – not that it affected my enjoyment of the film too much). Now, I’ve said in the past that I usually don’t go too in-depth with the plot unless I have pretty much nothing else to talk about, and once again, that’s the case here; everything here is very sound, and the film holds its production together very effectively, but there wasn’t really anything standout in any regard besides the plot.
For all the good that Nine Queens had going for it, this is yet another one that I could see no purpose in it making the list to begin with. It was a good flick, entertaining throughout, and with a plotline with some nice twists and turns to it to keep things interesting, but nothing about it screamed “must see before you die”, or even spoke it in a slightly louder tone of voice. I’m sure there are literally hundreds (if not thousands) of films just like this, from all over the world, that are just as solid and entertaining, so why was this one picked above everything else? And that’s assuming the list even needed the room for one of these films to make it at all. Still, even though I could see no reason for this to make the list, I wasn’t disappointed from watching it, and I think I can say with confidence that you won’t be either.
Arbitrary Rating: 8/10