So I was pleased to eat my words (thoughts) when I walked in and the doctor said "Hello. So why do you feel sick?" right off the bat. And despite the fact he spoke to me slow enough that my I could've transcribed our conversation by hand, the fact that he was all about my health and didn't bother with chitchat about completos and "cachai" while I sat there uncomfortably and impatient put him a few notches up in my book. Heck, he didn't even ask me where I'm from!
My stereotypes of how Chileans treat foreigners reminded me of a scene in a movie I saw recently, "Turistas." The main characters are in a nature center of sorts at a National Park, and the park ranger is speaking in Spanish to the main character, Carla, a Chilean lady. As soon as the other guy, a Norwegian, opens his mouth, the ranger's brain goes into I'm-talking-to-a-foreigner mode and addresses the guy "my friend." He then asks if he should speak to the two of them in English or Spanish, to which they reply "Spanish." And the ranger immediately switches all communication to English, having not paid attention nor hecho caso whatsoever to their preference. (1:05 in the trailer) I laughed so freaking hard at this scene, especially embarrassing because I had gone to the movie alone, which is pretty much a social taboo/GASP! in Chile.
It was just that this single scene happens to represent a nearly daily interaction of mine that, while experiencing it triggers an eye role or a sigh on my part, upon seeing executed it so accurately portrayed in a Chilean movie made me crack up.
I'm not much into using my blog as a venue for reviews, but I will say that I recommend the movie to anybody who's spent time in Chile. The movie is actually good regardless, but I think having been here and personally observed and analyzed Chilean society really made it a lot more interesting on another level. I ended up adapting my opinion on a number of my comments and my major complaint as the movie progressed to the point I felt the exact opposite or was left completely confused on how I felt. I would love to elaborate but its only fair to give everyone a chance to see it first. What I can say, however, is I was please with the complexities shown in the way Chileans tend to communicate, for example avoiding saying "no" or making up answers just to be able to give one, which made me repeatedly think "that is so typically Chilean" over and over. I didn't, however, connect with the main character as much as I would've liked because she represented a type of Chilean woman that I don't see much in Valparaiso, both physically and in personality quirks.
I'm not sure how many revealing moments of the movie, if any, I missed when I got distracted by an absurdly drunk man and his friends, but I did walk away from the movie with a number of doubts and questions in my head. For the first time I personally felt bummed by the fact I had gone alone because I lacked someone to bounce thoughts off. But regardless if it were because I missed a couple moments, I think a large part of the intentions of the movie was to spark those reflections. In the end it was in just that where they succeeded.