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Volver (2006)

Cartel_Volver

Written and directed by Pedro Almodóvar

Starring: Penélope Cruz, Carmen Maura, Lola Dueñas, Blanca Portillo, Yohana Cobo, Chus Lampreave

BY BEATRIZ CABALLERO RODRIGUEZ

From the outset, Pedro Almodóvar’s film Volver (2006) tackles the topics of memory and trauma across three generations of women. As the title Volver (meaning to return, to come back) indicates, this film is marked by a strong sense of disjointed time where the past refuses to stay in the past, ghosts refuse to stay buried, traumatic events refuse to be forgotten. Read More…

Nueve Reinas (Nine Queens, 2000)

9 Reinas

Written and directed by Fabián Bielinsky

Starring: Ricardo Darín, Gastón Pauls, Leticia Brédice.

BY PAMELA McLEAN

Sometimes old stories are the best, and Nine Queens has one of the oldest there is: the con is on, and experienced professional Marco teams up with young gun Sebastian to pull off the biggest con of either of their careers. Read More…

Social realism in Spanish cinema: Fernando León de Aranoa

This article was originally published on Issue number 2 of literary magazine Thi Wurd.

No me importa que al morir no haya otra vida,

lo que me preocuparía es que si hubiera otra fuera igual que esta”

Well, the worst thing wouldn’t be if there was nothing after death.

The worst thing would be if there was another life, just like this one

Princesas (2005)

Fernando_León_de_Aranoa_-_Seminci_2011

Written by Raquel Martínez

When thinking about contemporary Spanish cinema, one name usually springs to mind: the highly talented and internationally celebrated director Pedro Almodóvar. However, to what extent does his cinema depict Spanish life and culture? Although not everyone outside Spain is aware of it, a more realistic film tradition has existed there since the early 1950s. It was born under the influence of Italian Neorealism and was mainly represented by the great directors Luis García Berlanga and Juan Antonio Bardem (uncle of actor Javier Bardem) in films such as Welcome Mr. Marshall (1953) and Death of a Cyclist (1955). Many more followed; those who continued capturing the complex socio-political situation of a confused country and its people during the post-war era and the subsequent decades until Franco’s death in 1975. Read More…

El Bola (Pellet, 2000)

Guess the film 3

Directed by Achero Mañas

Written by Verónica Fernández and Achero Mañas

Starring: Juan José Ballesta, Pablo Galán, Alberto Jiménez, Manuel Morón, Ana Wagener

BY PAUL HUNTER

Playing potentially lethal games with express trains may not be everyone’s idea of fun, but for the eponymous 12 year old boy it’s where he can feel some rare companionship with his peers. It’s also safer, than being with his father. For the boy, nicknamed El Bola (Pellet) after the lucky ball bearing he always carries, is a victim of Read More…

Te Doy Mis Ojos (Take My Eyes, 2003)

Te doy mis ojos

Directed by Iciar Bollaín

Written by Iciar Bollaín and Alicia Luna

Starring: Laia Marull, Luis Tosar, Candela Peña

I’ll change. I swear I will”. These are some of the promising words that Antonio (an amazing Luis Tosar) utters to his wife Pilar (Laia Marull) in the film “Te doy mis ojos” just a few days after she escapes from home with her son. Pilar is one among thousands of victims of domestic violence in Spain. But in spite of fearing for her life Read More…

La Caja 507 (Box 507, 2002)

La Caja 507 foto

Directed by Enrique Urbizu

Written by Enrique Urbizu and Michel Gaztambide

Starring: José Coronado, Antonio Resines, Goya Toledo, Dafne Fernández, Sancho Gracia.

Costa del Sol, Spain. Locals, tourists, ex-pats and millionaires live side by side. Modesto works as a bank manager in a nameless town. Seven years earlier, his sixteen-year-old daughter died in a fire, an event that turned Modesto and his wife into a sad and joyless couple. But when a gang of robbers break into the bank Read More…