Football, passion of crowds. The world Cup. Argentina. The playoffs. Everything is a combo comes together in this film by Ariel Winogradcreator of great comedies like Mom went on a trip, Today the world is fixed and also The theft of the century. Now he comes with a new story but this time taking a real case as a starting point. A television company created a campaign prior to the 2018 World Cup in Russia that consisted of the following: if the Argentine soccer team did not qualify for the World Cup, you would keep the television and they would return your money. Risky for others, but a total success.
But the life of Álvaro Torres (Leonardo Sbaraglia), the marketing manager, is at a gray moment in his life: he is separated from his wife Florencia (Cecilia Dopazo, a nod to those who remember Clave de Sol and both were the couple fashionable teenager), he has a cold bond with his son Gonzalo (Valentín Wein) who tells him that he is going to drop out of college. To make matters worse, his boss, Federica (Carla Peterson) wants to fire him for being ineffective.
With nothing to lose, Álvaro comes up with this plan but the national team is not helping him and qualifying for the World Cup hangs in the balance. Or Messi. Manager only has the support of Omar (louis luke) and a member of their marketing team (Marina Bellatti) and a couple of other young workers. Now he has to pray for Argentina to qualify because otherwise his career will disappear in a snap. So Álvaro decides to go out behind the desk to play the field, without fear of losing.
Thus the life of this man, crushed by routine, with old-fashioned ideas, manages to revive with this idea that leads him to a sensation of adrenaline on the verge of a heart attack. Although many know the story and the ending, the film rides the comedy rails effectively. Meanwhile, Álvaro deals with the issue of high blood pressure that rises considerably every time he watches the last 4 games of the national team before the World Cup.
Manager It is a reflection of the reality of the Argentine middle class, with bureaucracy, abusive bosses, cool colleagues, mate, soccer and a man who has worked for decades in the same place.” Who is in charge here?” asks Álvaro as a way of solving a container that is stopped in the port. A question that all of us who live in Latin America know is key to resolving any conflict. The brown tone of the offices is key to understanding the crushing routine that everyone in the company lives.
Sbaraglia shines in the skin of this man who rises from the ashes in the middle of his life who manages to recover the bond with his son and who conveys that being over 50 does not mean being old but having experience, which is of incalculable value. The villain in this conflict is Federica (Peterson) who is also comfortable in the universe of comedies and makes the viewer not want her goals to be fulfilled.
The midlife crisis is combined with a marketing strategy and that defining match against Ecuador, where Lionel Messi once again became the hero of an entire country. This film arrives a month before Qatar 2022 begins in a country where football is key and even those who do not enjoy or watch this sport throb.
But the film (which features a rampaging Tano Pasman swearing nonstop, for which he became famous when River Plate were relegated to B) goes beyond football. He talks about taking risks, going through crises, shuffling and giving again, taking risks, leaving the comfort zone and simplifying things.
“It’s not that easy to live in the real world,” Álvaro tells his son, who asks him not to pass on his frustration to him. Because he is a man who knows about pressures and obligations. All my life I handled myself with an instruction manual: here in the company and outside as well. I don’t want that anymore for my life”, says Álvaro looking at the camera as a reflection of what could have been and is not.
Manager It is one of those emotional films that amuse and lead us to rediscover affection and the simplest things in life that end up being the most important.
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“The manager”: an effective comedy that combines football and midlife crisis