Ernesto Díaz Espinoza, Chile, 2007, 90 min.
The joy of Mirageman is that it takes a simple premise and a skilled athlete, and tells a story filled with fun, humor and pathos. All on a small budget.
We open on a super-athletic Marco Zaror working out and practicing martial arts in his small apartment. We follow him as he goes on a run and stumbles across a robbery in progress. He makes short work of the bad guys, taking one of their masks, and rescues a beautiful reporter, María Elena Swett.
Eventually, he becomes the masked avenger called Mirageman. He keeps this persona primarily to inspire his depressed younger brother who had suffered through a horrific experience and now is institutionalized.
The film is shot on video, but not to its detriment. The format is well-used and gives the film-makers ample freedom and speed to pull together some great sequences. The fights are quick, well-shot and full of cool moves. And the David Bowie scene is worth the price of admission alone.
There are a small handful of films that inspire me creatively. The type of films that are made with passion and skill, without large budgets or huge support. This is one of them. A film with a clever idea, some talented people, loads of creativity and a love for the spirit of film-making.