Archive of films Tricky Life / En la puta vida

2001, 97 min

Section: Another View
Year: 2002

A sexy tragicomedy about Elisa from Montevideo, a 27-year-old mom who sets sail across the ocean in search of happiness, security and independence. After many wrenching twists of fate her life quite unexpectedly takes a turn for the better….


This sexy tragicomedy recounts the tale of Elisa, a woman looking for happiness, security and independence. Her dream is to own a hair salon in Montevideo. But because she’s short of funds and is taking care of two kids from different fathers, she accepts a job as a hostess. In the end, she doesn’t even scorn the idea of making a bit more cash as a prostitute – and a damn good one at that. After meeting a pimp named Placido and falling in love, it seems as if all her dreams will come true. She and Placido and friend Loulou decide to move to Europe, and they end up in Barcelona as illegal immigrants. Elisa dreams of staggering wages, but she quickly sobers up and is forced to face disappointment and disillusionment. She has to work the streets, her lover beats her, and the dramatic situation is made all the worse by an ever uglier struggle between Uruguayan prostitutes and Brazilian transvestites. When Loulou dies, Elisa’s world view is elementally marred. She stops idealizing Placido, and her loyalty to him evaporates. The harsh reality of her life forces her to collaborate with the police, but her decision to do so is made just that much easier by the discovery that, thanks to Placido, her two kids have ended up in a Uruguayan orphanage….

About the director

Beatriz Flores Silva (b. 1956, Montevideo, Uruguay) moved to Belgium in 1982 where she graduated in film production, earning a diploma from the Institute of Broadcasting Arts (1985-89). She has written several screenplays and has produced various films, among others the shorts Les Puits and Les Lézards (which won the 1990 Best Film Award at the Algarve Film Festival in Portugal). She co-founded AA.Les Films Belges film cooperative and worked there as a producer. As part of her training as a director, Silva attended a course in Brussels given by Delia Salvi (UCLA) and Robert Lewis, the founder of Actor’s Studio. She herself taught direction at the Academy of Dramatic Arts of Ottignies-Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium, and in Uruguay. Back home she directed the made-for-TV film La Historia casi verdadera de Pepita la Pistolera (1992), which won a number of international awards and took the Grand Prix at the 12th International Uruguayan Film Festival in 1994. Silva was engaged as the president of the Uruguayan Association of Cinema and Video Producers, and as director of the School of Uruguayan Cinematography. In 1999 she accepted a Fulbright scholarship to the United States. Since 1998 she has been busy writing, directing and producing Tricky Life.

About the film

Black & white, 35 mm

Section: Another View
Director: Beatriz Flores Silva
Screenplay: Beatriz Flores Silva, János J. Kovacsi
Dir. of Photography: Francisco Gozou
Music: Carlos da Silveira
Editor: Marie-Hélene Dozo, Daniel Marquez
Producer: Beatriz Flores Silva, Hubert Toint, Stefan Schritz
Production: Saga Film
Cast: Mariana Santangelo, Silvestre, Josep Linuesa, Andrea Fantoni, Marta Gularte

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