Spanish Films In Capital

<br><P>NITISH DEV BHATTARAI</P>

Oct. 12, 2010, 5:45 p.m. Published in Magazine Issue: Vol.: 04 No.-09 Oct. -08-2010(Ashwin 22, 2067)

The Spanish Embassy, New Delhi and the Honorary Consul in Nepal screened four Spanish films at the Russian Culture on Sunday, September 26th and Monday, September 27th after two years.


Two movies were shown on Sunday.
The first movie was Ay Carmela (Oh Carmela)! It tells the story of a trio of traveling comedians performing for the Republic, who inadvertently find themselves on the nationalist side during the closing months of the Spanish Civil War (1933-1936). Paulino and Carmela are husband and wife, troubadours touring the countryside with their mute assistant Gustavete. When they step into rebel territory by mistake they are arrested and receive a reprieve from an Italian Fascist commander who loves theater. He arranges a performance for his troops, bargaining with Paulino to stage a mockery of the Republic in exchange for the actor’s freedom.


The second movie was Los Otros (The Others). It tells the story of a woman named Grace who retires with her two photosensitive children to a mansion on Jersey, where she’s waiting for her husband to come back from battle. They live alone there with oppressive, strange and almost religious rules, until Grace hires a group of servants. Their arrival accidentally begins to break the rules with unexpected consequences. This is a psychological horror film by Spanish director Alejandro Amenábar, starring Nicole Kidman.


The remaining two films were shown the next day. The first of these flims was Abre Los Ojos or Open Your Eyes. It tells the story of a good looking César meeting Sofía, the girlfriend of his best friend Pelayo. After his birthday party, he takes Sofía home and stays the night. The next morning, César’s obsessive ex-lover pulls up outside Sofía’s flat and offers him a lift. She crashes the car, committing suicide, and César is horribly disfigured, beyond the help of cosmetic surgery. After his disfigurement, he begins to have a series of disorienting experiences which will open a new path to reality.


The last movie is named En Construcción (Under Construction). This documentary focuses less on the practicalities of the building than the impact the project has on those who live in the neighborhood. The myriad of characters whose lives are tied in some way or another to this building, a teenage couple squatting in a nearby building, an illegal alien looking for work for himself and his son, a neighborhood girl  who becomes infatuated with one of the construction workers reflects life in a very poetic way. The death of a stray cat and the discovery of a mass grave during the construction also point to the tragic losses that are sometimes part of progress.


These movies were shown to share with the people in Nepal the cultural and social scenario as well as the different aspects of Spanish film making. It was to draw the people of Nepal closer to the people of Spain.

 

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