It is, says London’s Time Out, an “impeccable work of art.” The Telegraph calls it, “an intense and sexy yet turbulent love story.” And if that weren’t enough, the Independent claimed it has “the sexiest cartoon female since Jessica Rabbit.”
But if you missed "Chico & Rita" when it came to the Telluride Film Festival this past September, you might be waiting a while to see it in a theater: It currently has no release date in the United States.
The animated tale of a 1940’s love affair between a jazz singer and a pianist, played out against the backdrops of Havana and New York, "Chico & Rita" is decidedly grown up (ie, beware of cartoon nudity).
It was born of a collaboration between Spain’s well-known artist and designer, Javier Mariscal, and Oscar-winning director Fernando Trueba (“Belle Epoque”), and the filmmakers took obsessive care with period detail. Havana street scenes, for example, are partially based on a newly-discovered trove of government photos originally taken as part of a 1949 public works project.
The filmmakers also convinced both big band legend Bebo Valdés and flamenco great Estrella Morente to help out with the sound of the film. The sultry, arty result has won accolades in festivals from Toronto to Utrecht, Holland, and in the U.K., where it opened in November.
Next up: A roll-out in Spain in February in 2011. But as for the States? Nada so far, writes a spokesman.
Before going all viral army, check out the trailer, below.