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Fantasia 2020

[Fantasia] ‘La Dosis’ review: Killing them softly

An interesting thriller

Putting your life in the hands of another person is not an easy decision. Even when that person is a health professional, there is still that inherent fear. Screening at the Fantasia Film Festival, Argentinian film La Dosis takes that fear to the next level. What if a health care professional likes to euthanize their patients? La Dosis takes place in the intensive care unit of a hospital. Marcos Roldan is a nurse that works the night shift. He sometimes performs mercy killings out of pity. Gabriel also euthanizes patients behind everyone’s back. But his reasons are entirely different. 

This is an interesting premise for a movie. It plays into a real fear that many people have. The difference being, it takes it to a shocking extreme. The execution does not play out quite as well. however. The main issue with La Dosis is immediately apparent. Who is the audience supposed to root for? Initially, it seems as if the plot is going to set up a different take on the car and mouse genre. Both nurses work in secret while sometimes catching each other in the act. These early moments of the film arguably have the most tension.

Soon, it becomes apparent that Marcos is supposed to be the protagonist. The problem because there is no reason to think of Marcos as a good person. He justifies what he is doing as an act of pity. No matter how a person feels about euthanasia, the reality is he is taking it upon himself to make the final decision. It is hard to take the side of someone who is killing people in their sleep.

An interesting thriller

On the other hand, Gabriel is a great villain. He also does nothing to earn the audience’s sympathy, but he is not meant to. He is also very manipulative and is clearly the bad guy between the two. The difference is, La Dosis makes it okay to root against him. He is killing people in an incredibly frightening way. His passive aggressive demeanor only makes him that much easier to dislike.

Despite the issues surrounding the script, there is a lot of positive in La Dosis. The two male nurses have an dynamic that works well. Marcos and Gabriel keep the story engaging as their relationship develops. It may be hard to pick a rooting interest, but it does not make the film any less engaging. La Dosis is a very intriguing idea. A pair of nurses working at a hospital secretly euthanize patients. While the script is flawed, there is enough to make it enjoyable.

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