Living Behind Bars: Representations of the Costa Rican Home in Cinematic Works by Hernán Jiménez

Harvey-Kattou, L. 2018. Living Behind Bars: Representations of the Costa Rican Home in Cinematic Works by Hernán Jiménez. Journal of Romance Studies. 18 (2), pp. 205-225. https://doi.org/10.3828/jrs.2018.14

TitleLiving Behind Bars: Representations of the Costa Rican Home in Cinematic Works by Hernán Jiménez
TypeJournal article
AuthorsHarvey-Kattou, L.
Abstract

‘¿Por qué hay tantas rejas? Todas esas casas parecen jaulas.’ [Why are there so many bars? All these houses look like cages]. Hernán Jiménez’s central character, Antonio, poses this question in the national box-office hit, El regreso [The Return] (2011), upon returning to his hometown of San José, Costa Rica, after a decade living in New York. The home as an imprisoning space which mirrors what Jiménez sees as the oppressive atmosphere of the nation’s capital is a recurring theme in his work and this article therefore considers the domestic space as a place of fear and unease rather than comfort and rest, analysing the role of security, family, and home in Costa Rica. These reflections are explored with reference to three of Jiménez’s cinematic works: the documentary Doble llave y cadena [Double Lock and Chain] (2005), and the two feature-length fiction films A ojos cerrados [Closed Eyes] (2009) and El regreso (2011), which are analysed according to Homi K. Bhabha and Dwayne Avery’s conceptions of the unhomely home.

KeywordsCentral American cinema, Costa Rica, Hernán Jiménez, Homi K. Bhabha, insecurity, unhomely.
JournalJournal of Romance Studies
Journal citation18 (2), pp. 205-225
ISSN1473-3536
Year2018
PublisherLiverpool University Press
Accepted author manuscript
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.3828/jrs.2018.14
Publication dates
Published07 Jun 2018

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