Spain

Isabel Coixet – Cosas que nunca te dije AKA Things I Never Told You (1996)

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Plot:
Ann’s boyfriend leaves her in Prague after suddenly announcing that he doesn’t love her anymore. Lonely, Ann calls a helpline and meets another man, depressed and unhappy. A sensitive and carefully written love story.

Some reviews:
Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz

Isabel Coixet directs and writes an off-beat comedy/drama about the search for love amidst the misery of existence, that succeeds in its efforts to be cute. Lili Taylor is an over educated camera shop clerk at a loss after being dumped by her foreign correspondent boyfriend in Prague via telephone, who out of the blue mentions he doesn’t love her anymore. Into the picture steps a lonely real estate salesman, Andrew McCarthy, temporarily working for dad after his relationship ended with him being dumped. He works nights as a volunteer for Hope Line to gain insight into his own depression, and takes Taylor’s desperate suicide call on the hot-line. They form a relationship when he goes into her camera store and they meet without realizing they spoke to each other. To complicate things further, Taylor makes some embarrassingly foolish video-tapes to send to her lover in hopes of explaining herself more to him. But the videos are stolen by the shy delivery boy Alexis Arquette, who has a secret crush on her.
An engaging and meaningful narrative follows along with likable performances and some plot surprises, as the overall tone remains quirky enough to veer away from the traps of sitcom.
It was filmed in St. Helens, Oregon. Read More »

Bigas Luna – La Teta y la luna aka The Tit and the Moon (1994)

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Plot Synopsis [AMG] This Spanish/French film presents a loving ode to a woman’s breasts and the three men who love them. The fairy tale is told from the viewpoint of 9-year old Tete, who jealous of his new brother’s access to his mother’s breasts, implores the moon to give him a nurturing breast of his own. French cabaret performers Estrellita, the Queen of Stuttgart, and her jealous husband Maurice, come to town with their surprisingly vulgar act. When Tete sees Estrellita, he knows his wish has been granted. Trailer-park electrician Miquel is also very attracted to Estrellita’s charming chest and begins serenade her. Tete gets to sample her charms after he brings her a frog. Read More »

José Luis Guerín – Innisfree (1990)

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Description:
A documentary focused on the modern-day village of Innisfree, the location used by legendary director John Ford for his Irish romance The Quiet Man.

Innisfree (from the Gaelic Inis Fraoich, the heather island) is the name of a tiny island in Lough Gill, to the south ­east of Sligo town, which was immortalised by Yeats in one of his best ­ known poems, ” The Lake lsle of Innisfree ” (The Rose, 1893). Written at a time when the poet lived in London with his family, and “felt very homesick” (Kirby, 1977: 46), “The Lake Isle of Innisfree” expresses a nostalgic longing for a simple country life apart from the stresses of urban life that places it within a pastoral tradition. Read More »

José Luis Guerín – Guest (2010)

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Filmmaker Jose Luis Guerin documents his experience during a year of traveling as a guest of film festivals to present his previous film. What emerges is a wonderfully humane and sincere portrayal of the people that he meets when he goes off the beaten track in some of the world’s major cities. (IMDB Plot Summary) Read More »

José Val del Omar – Tríptico Elemental de España (1960)

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José Val del Omar (Granada 1904 – Madrid 1982)

With an extraordinary artistic and technological talent, Val del Omar was a ”believer in cinema” inspired by new horizons that he formulated in the term PLAT – representing the totalizing concept of a ”Picto-Luminic-Audio-Tactile” art – apart from being a contemporary and a comrade of Lorca, Cernuda, Renau, Zambrano and other figures of a Silver Age of the Spanish culture, interrupted by the Civil War. In 1928 he anticipated various of his most characteristic techniques, including the ”apanoramic overflow of the image” beyond the limits of the screen, and the concept of ”tactile vision”. These techniques. and those of ”diaphonic sound” and other explorations in the field of electro-acoustics, would be applied in his Tríptico Elemental de España [Elementary Tryptich of Spain], begun in 1953 and only finished after his death. His work and tenacious research activity – quite against any tendency of misunderstanding and forgetfulness – did not begin to be rediscovered until shortly before his death, though it has constituted the beginning of a renaissance that continues to draw followers. ”Endless”, as he would put at the end of his films. Read More »

Daniel Sánchez Arévalo – Gordos AKA Fat People (2009)

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A group of overweight people attend therapy sessions in an attempt to solve their weight and emotional problems.

“GORDOS” is a comedy about life’s excesses and deficiencies; about our insecurities, phobias, obsessions, traumas, mistakes, fears, blame, desires, hopes, challenges, concessions, goals, relationships, love, sex, health, family… about survival in the widest and “largest” sense of the word Read More »

Julio Medem – Los Amantes del Circulo Polar aka Lovers of the Arctic Circle (1998)

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Quote:
As young children, Otto (Fele Martínez) and Ana (Najwa Nimri) become best friends, leading to the marriage of Ana’s mother, Olga (Maru Valdiviesio), to Otto’s father, Álvaro (Nancho Novo). When Otto and Ana become teenagers, they begin a sexual relationship, which they hide from their parents. The two fall deeply in love and seem destined to spend the rest of their lives together. However, their relationship is tested when Otto’s mother dies and the two are separated. Read More »