Spain

Manuel Muñoz Rivas – El mar nos mira de lejos AKA The Sea Stares at Us from Afar (2017)

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The legend of an ancient and forgotten civilization lies buried beneath a large expanse of dunes. For more than a century, certain travelers have reached this remote and desolate territory looking for the traces of ancient inhabitants, the ruins of a city, or perhaps a sort of lost utopia. Ignorant of these myths and the romantic delusions of archaeologists and adventurers, a few men, barely visible among the sands, today inhabit in solitude that place facing the sea.

‘The Sea Stares at Us From Afar’ premiered at Berlinale Forum in 2017 and won the Best Documentary award at Tolouse Spanish Film Festival, the Best Feature Film award at L’Alternativa Film Festival in Barcelona and the De Luxe Award at Sevilla Film Festival. Read More »

Pedro Almodóvar – Julieta (2016)

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Julieta (Emma Suarez) is a middle-aged woman living in Madrid with her boyfriend Lorenzo. Both are going to move to Portugal when she casually runs into Bea, former best friend of her daughter Antia, who reveals that this one is living in Switzerland married and with three children. With the heart broken after 12 years of total absence of her daughter, Julieta cancels the journey to Portugal and she moves to her former building, in the hope that Antia someday communicates with her sending a letter. Alone with her thoughts, Julieta starts to write her memories to confront the pain of the events happened when she was a teenager (Adriana Ugarte) and met Xoan, a Galician fisherman. Falling in love with him, Julieta divides her time between the family, the job and the education of Antia until a fatal accident changes their lives. Slowly decaying in a depression, Julieta is helped by Antia and Bea, but one day Antia goes missing suddenly after a vacation with no clues about where to find … Read More »

Adrian Silvestre & Luis Alejandro Yero – Natalia Nikolaevna (2014)

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Natalia Nikolaevna lives 400 km from Havana, in the city where the first nuclear power plant would be built in Cuba. He arrived 20 years ago from the USSR, to be reunited with her husband and work as an opera singer. In 1992, he began the great crisis, known as the Special Period. Natalia divorced, and rooted in the place gradually discovered him as the most hostile of spaces. Single mother without job opportunities, invented their own stage-a park-, their own -the spectators tourists- and their own livelihood: what gave him for his arias. Read More »

Claudia Llosa – Aloft (2014)

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As we follow a mother (Jennifer Connelly) and her son (Cillian Murphy), we delve into a past marred by an accident that tears them apart. She will become a renowned artist and healer, and he will grow into his own as a peculiar falconer who bears the marks of a double absence. In the present, a young journalist (Mélanie Laurent) will bring about an encounter between the two that puts the very meaning of life and art into question, so that we may contemplate the possibility of living life to its fullest, despite the uncertainties littering our paths. Read More »

Álex de la Iglesia – El bar AKA The Bar (2017)

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On an ordinary day in bustling downtown Madrid, life ticks over as usual, while inside a decrepit and noisy central bar, a motley assortment of common urbanites is killing time indolently, up until a loud gunshot sends chills down the spine. Out of the blue, now a man lies dead in front of the bar in a pool of blood, and then surprisingly, in broad daylight, another death follows. Where did that mysterious lethal bullet come from? Is this an act of terrorism or is there a solitary invisible sniper hidden on a roof? As hysteria prevails and the bodies miraculously vanish into thin air, the perplexed and terrified bar’s regulars are bound to turn on each other, paranoid and suspicious of the potential assassin who might be hiding inside the place. Is there indeed a wolf among sheep? Read More »

Luis Buñuel – Viridiana (1961)

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Viridiana, a young novice about to take her final vows as a nun, accedes to a request from her widowed uncle to visit him. Moved purely by a sense of obligation, she does so. Her uncle is moved by her resemblance to his late wife to attempt to seduce Viridiana, and tragedy ensues. In the aftermath, Viridiana tries to assuage her guilt by creating a haven for the destitute folk who live around her uncle’s estate. But from these good intentions, too, comes little good. Read More »

Alejandro Amenábar – Agora (2009)

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A historical drama set in Roman Egypt, concerning a slave who turns to the rising tide of Christianity in the hope of pursuing freedom while falling in love with his mistress, the famous philosophy and mathematics professor Hypatia of Alexandria. Read More »