There’s still time to nominate local icons for Best of D.C.
Dark, scrawny Nico (Jordi Vilches) and blond, not-quite-so-bony Dani (Fernando Ramallo) have been friends since grade school. Now they’re teenagers on different paths—Dani is an aspiring novelist, and Nico hopes to be a mechanic—but they’re still pals. They’re spending some lazy vacation time at Dani’s family’s vacation house on the Mediterranean, unsupervised except by two part-timers: a cook and Dani’s tutor. The two boys plan to fish, shoot rabbits, go to the beach, and engage in a few rounds of “krámpack”—this Spanish film’s original title, which is the boys’ code word for mutual masturbation. Then they hook up with Elena (Marieta Orozco) and Berta (Esther Nubiola) for some heterosexual experimentation; the two boys drug their dates, and Dani goes so far as to molest Berta while she’s knocked out. That’s supposed to be OK, though, because Dani doesn’t really desire Berta. This boy wants to be with the boys, and when he realizes that Nico is intent on losing his virginity to Elena, Dani starts flirting with Julián (Chisco Amado), a middle-aged writer who’s friendly with Dani’s tutor. Adapted by writer-director Cesc Gay and co-writer Tomás Aragay from Jordi Sánchez’s play, Nico and Dani is relaxed, sun-dappled, and populated with pretty people. It’s also about as predictable as any film this lackadaisical can be; if there’s any coming-of-age cliché Gay doesn’t enlist, it’s probably because he couldn’t be bothered. Let it also be noted that, in the week that Filmfest DC screens Wake Up, Love, two films making light of Spanish-speaking dolts’ attempted date rapes is at least one too many. —Mark Jenkins