Synopsis: About a peculiar young boy who, as he blurs reality and fantasy, takes over the responsibilities of a family man in his father's absence.
Genre: Comedy, Drama
Director(s): Diego Luna
Production: Lionsgate Films
  2 wins & 8 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
82 min

Put those things away.

- Why?

No binoculars at Christmas breakfast.

Put them away!

Give them here!

Come along boys, no bickering.

- I'm not bickering.

No, I'm bickering!

- Set a good example for once.

Let your son set a good

example for once.

Is he only my son all of a sudden?

- Aren't I your son?

You don't take after me, at any rate.

Victor, how can you say that?

Your eyes, your hair-lines,

your walks...

That's not what I mean.

He means that I haven't got a

single good quality; and he has.

Is that what you mean?

- Yes, that's what I mean.

With those good qualities

he became an admysterytator.

Administrator, and I'm not

an administrator.

Your fasther is sub-manager.

Oh, I thought he was an admysterytator.

- Administrator!

Are you sure about that?

I still think it's...


We haven't wished each other

Merry Christmas yet.

Merry Christmas.

Merry Christmas.

And let's for once try to have

Christmas breakfast...

...without any arguments.

- But there aren't any arguments.

No, I'm just wishing us a Merry

Christmas breakfast without arguments.

Then there will be an argument.

Why must you bloody-well

reverse everything?

I'm putting things straight.

Straight to you, imbicile!

Stop it.

Now there is an argument.

Because you accentuated it.

Is that so surprising? Every

Christmas breakfast I can remember...

...has been permeated with discord.

Because up till now you've said at the

beginning of every Christmas breakfast...

...with that Christmas-breakfast

look in your eyes:

"Let's for once try to have

a Christmas breakfast...

...without any arguments."

And every year you manage with those

nasty wolfish eyes of yours...

...to completely poison

the atmosphere.

Hey, did you hear that?

He's just asking for an argument.

You mustn't try and push things

to extremes, Victor.

I say, the salmon is delicious.

Isn't it? Shrimps the whole time.

I thought let's have salmon.

I've never been a one for shrimps.

He always wants shrimps.


I don't even like shrimps, you're

the one who always wants shrimps.

Dove, who is it that always

wants shrimps?


Your father is right.

So I'm lying?

So I'm lying?!

I'm not saying that.

But you did always want shrimps.

So I'm lying then!

Say I'm lying.

You're lying.

Now, that's heartenings I must say.

Your own mother calling you a liar.

You're ganging up together,

I knew it, against me.

Why do I still live here?

Because you're an imbicile

who doesn't dare to go outside.

We want to have a serious talk

with you.

Your father's got a plan.

You'll soon be thirty one.

- Thirty two.

Tomorrow we're going to the dunes.

- A quiet, secluded spot.

You mustn't think anything more of it,

we're just going out.

Fresh air's good for you.

We're going in the car,

we won't see another soul.

And what about those gin-traps?

I'll walk on ahead and beat

the ground with a stick.

Yeah, and then of course we'll

get lost.

I know exactly what will happen.

We won't get lost, Abel.

Your father's taking a compass.

Your mother's making a bag

full of food.

Nothing can happen to us.

What about stray bullets?

There are hunters in the dunes,

you know.

How often hav you read that:

"Man hit by stray bullet."?

There's no hunting in the dunes,

is there?

Of course not, just a few

rabbit-snares, that's all.

Right, and who sets them?

Poachers, that's who.

They're all inbred.

They go stark raving mad if anyone

ventures onto their hunting-grounds.

D'you know what?

We'll take a guide with us.

And two bearers, and guns

and ammunition...

...and a first-aid kit,

and beads.

And a mosquito-net and a sextant.

We're not going into

the bloody jungle!

There's nothing wrong.

Just answer the psychiatrist's



I'm not retarded, am I?

- That's for the psychiatrist to decide.

Doctor van Boven, this is Abel.

Abel, act normally.

Doctor, don't be misled.

This is just play-acting.

What's your name, lad?

For God's sake Abel,

stop that nonsense!

Doctor, you understand that he's

just putting this on?

Yes, I understand. I'm not retarded.

- No, of course not.

The question is, what is the cause?

Oh, I can tell you right away.

Please sit down.

How long is it since Abel

has been outside?

Two years.

- Ten years.

And for ten years he's been

trying to cut flies in half.

When Abel was born,

where there any complications?


Where do you get that idea from?

- Well, it was a long, painful delivery.

Abel was blue,

he had difficulty breathing.

What are you talking about?

You were there, at the birth?

Yes, of course, yes.

Well, I was in the corridor, but

I know exactly what happened.

The first few weeks he had signs

of slight paralysis.

And around the age of fourteen

eczema in his armpits.

According to our doctor,

the result of nervousness.

Now, this is going beyond

all reason!

Please, admit that none

of this is true!

I don't want to draw any

conclusions straight away.

But I can't help feeling that

the root of the problem...

...a major part of it anyway,

lies with the father.


Yes, look, you're ashamed of Abel.

Wouldn't you be ashamed of

a son like that?

That's got nothing to do with it.

The other part...

...the root of the problem,

lies with the mother.

You see, you over-protect your son.

Both your attitudes as parents

are in conflict...

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Augusto Mendoza

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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    "Abel" Scripts.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 24 May 2024. <https://www.scripts.com/script/abel_2143>.

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