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Past Films

Crystal Fairy & The Magical Cactus

  • Starring: Agustín Silva, Gaby Hoffmann, Jos, Juan Andr, Michael Cera
  • Director: Sebastián Silva
  • Genre(s): Adventure, Comedy
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • Running Time: 98 min.

Jamie is a boorish, insensitive American twentysomething traveling in Chile, who somehow manages to create chaos at every turn. He and his friends are planning on taking a road trip north to experience a legendary shamanistic hallucinogen called the San Pedro cactus. In a fit of drunkenness at a wild party, Jamie invites an eccentric woman — a radical spirit named Crystal Fairy — to come along. What is meant to be a devil-may-care journey becomes a battle of wills as Jamie finds himself locking horns with his new traveling companion. But on a remote, pristine beach at the edge of the desert, the magic brew is finally imbibed, and the true adventure begins.

"It is a shaggy dog road movie, and a drug-hazy one at that, but beneath the silliness and character-based gags, Crystal Fairy is, I feel, an unusually insightful look at self-imposed false identities and group dynamics."
- Jordan Hoffman,
"It leaves you with provocative questions and memorable images rather than neatly wrapped answers, and with that feeling of imprecise mystery I remember so well from my own youthful experiences: Something beautiful and evanescent just happened, or almost happened. But you can’t describe it, and if you try to seize it, it vanishes into sand and salt and sun."
- Andrew O'Hehir,
"The film is often beautiful and appealingly light. Every clear-eyed insight into why pushy people insist on pushing is matched by loose ensemble humor and lyric reveries."
- Alan Scherstuhl, Village Voice
"One of the most satisfying things about Crystal Fairy is that even though the lead character prefers to keep an ironic distance from things, the film itself is completely sincere. It’s about being good to people even when they’re kind of ridiculous."
- Cory Everett, The Playlist
"Sebastián Silva is extremely perceptive about body language, and the characters’ physical presences are as revealing as their words. The performances give you an almost uncomfortable sense of proximity."
- Stephen Holden, The New York Times