The Dark Side of the Heart

The Dark Side of the Heart (Spanish: El lado oscuro del corazón) is a 1992 Argentine romantic drama surrealist film written and directed by Eliseo Subiela.[1] The film was selected as the Argentine entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 65th Academy Awards, but was not accepted as a nominee.[2][3] It is currently considered a cult film.[4]

The Dark Side of the Heart
Directed byEliseo Subiela
Written byEliseo Subiela
Based onSelected poems
by Oliverio Girondo
Mario Benedetti
Juan Gelman
Produced bySuzanne Dussault
Roger Frappier
Susana Serebrenik
Fernando Sokolowicz
StarringDarío Grandinetti
Sandra Ballesteros
Nacha Guevara
CinematographyHugo Colace
Edited byMarcela Sáenz
Music byMário Clavel
Osvaldo Montes
Chico Novarro
Fito Páez
Release date
  • 21 May 1992 (1992-05-21)
Running time
127 minutes


Oliverio (Grandinetti), a Bohemian poet, travels through Buenos Aires with his friends, harassed by Death, looking for a woman capable of “flying”. In the course of the film, the poetry of Mario Benedetti, Juan Gelman and Oliverio Girondo is seen intermingled with the thickest places of Argentine and Uruguayan artistic daily life. From the barbecue, to the battered bars of Buenos Aires and Montevideo, the main character's thought is intermittently intertwined with fiction, only to be able to better show the central character's thinking.

The story unfolds in the comings and goings of Oliverio, through his world, in which, exchanging food for poetry, or asking for coins on street corners, seeing Mario Benedetti reciting his poems in German, seeing Genetic sculptures, talking to cows, and conversing with death seem to be part of any given day in the life of a poet.



Montreal World Film Festival

  • Grand Prix des Amériques

Biarritz Film Festival

  • Best Actor
  • Best Actress

Huelva Ibero-American Film Festival

  • Critic Award

Havana Film Festival

  • Best Actor

Argentine Academy of Cinematography Arts and Sciences Awards

  • Best Director
  • Best Cinematography
  • Best Art Direction
  • Best Editing

43rd Berlin International Film Festival

  • Jury Award of the Readers of the Berliner Zeitung newspaper, International Forum of Young Cinema

Cartagena Film Festival

  • Best Director
  • Best Cinematography
  • Critics Jury Award

Cinoche International Film Festival of Baie-Comeau

  • Best Screenplay

Festival du film de Sept-Îles

  • Best Film

Silver Condor, Argentine Film Critics Association

  • Best Director
  • Best Cinematography
  • Best Art Direction
  • Best Female Revelation

Bergamo Film Meeting

  • “Rosa Camuna” Award for Best Film

Sin Cortes Awards

  • Best film
  • Best Screenplay
  • Best Art Direction
  • Best Original Music Score
  • Best Female Revelation

Argentores Awards

  • Best Film Book

Festival de Gramado

  • Best Director
  • Best Actor
  • Best Original Music Score


A sequel titled The Dark Side of the Heart 2 was released in 2001. A Spanish-Argentine co-production, also written and directed by Eliseo Subiela, and starring Darío Grandinetti and Sandra Ballesteros, along with Ariadna Gil and Nacha Guevara. It was released on July 5, 2001.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Clarke Fountain (2016). "The Dark Side of the Heart". Movies & TV Dept. The New York Times. Baseline & All Movie Guide. Archived from the original on 25 March 2016. Retrieved 20 September 2015.
  2. ^ Margaret Herrick Library, Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
  3. ^ "Foreign Oscar entries submitted". Variety. Retrieved 20 September 2015.
  4. ^ The return of ‘The dark side of the heart’, by Jordi Costa: "A film that perfectly fits the concept of cult cinema is back in theaters: nobody gave a penny for it (at the time of its release), not even its director" 09-07-2017, El País (in Spanish)

External linksEdit