Every year there are thousands of film festivals all over the world. I went to a small one when I graduated from college 10 years ago and had a good time meeting and talking with fellow filmmakers. At these festivals small movies that may never been shown in theaters are watched and enjoyed by a selected few who are lucky enough to get a ticket. Last year a film with a odd title made the film festival tour including Sundance called Crystal Fairy and the Magical Cactus.
Written and directed by Sebastian Silva and starring Michael Cera, Gaby Hoffmann and a quartet of unknown actors which include Silva and his brother the story takes place over a course of a few days in Chile. The movie opens as Jamie (Cera) and Champa played by Juan Andres Silva are at a party where they meet Cystal Fairy (Hoffmann). Although he is high at the time and doesn't remember the next day Jamie ends up inviting her on their quest to find the famous San Pedro cactus. The six characters share a van as they drive onward going to house to house asking to purchase the owners cactus, when Jamie gets his hands on one they take it to a beautiful beach and it turns out this particular plant is a amazingly good drug. For an actor who mostly plays fun loving roles Cera as Jamie is a real jerk! He is annoyed by Cystal and her look at life for most of the film so when they tell stories around the camp fire he laughs at her but the brothers are sweet and a real joy to watch even if I have to read subtitles to understand them. Once their camp is set, Jamie cooks the cactus as the rest just have fun. When the gang finally drinks the San Pedro, Crystal goes off to do her own thing as the boys stay on the beach.
Cystal Fairy and the Magical cactus is a strange little tale but nice to look at and fun to watch. What I liked the most about this charming movie is although there was a script most of the time it felt as if I had jut joined a real journey with real people and real conversations. Give a unseen and little known film a chance and look for Crystal Fairy and the Magical Cactus.