Have you chosen your picks for this year’s Moro Spanish Film Festival?
With sessions already filling up, we’re taking a moment to look at 5 films we think are must-sees!
The August Virgin (CTC) | BOOK TICKETS
A sumptuous, liberating drama about home and self, The August Virgin was chosen by respected film journal Cahiers du Cinéma as one of the 10 top films of 2020. An intoxicating celebration of Madrid, The August Virgin is a coming-of-age tale for the thirty-somethings. Newly unemployed and unexpectedly single, Madrid’s famously hot August weather sets the scene for Eva (Itsaso Arana), a woman in her early thirties. Determined to change her life for the better, Eva decides to spend her summer in a short-term apartment so she can experience her hometown anew. Following Eva on her nocturnal travels through the city’s streets and bars, the absorbing feature reveals the puzzle pieces of her life that have led her to this moment.
An intimate journey of a woman in search of revelations, Eva encounters people from her past and meets new friends at open-air summer fiestas. Seeing Madrid through new eyes as she wanders through its picture postcard attractions, Eva’s summer is one of discovery; of the city she dearly loves and herself at the crossroads of youth and maturity.
Martin (Diego Gentile, Wild Tales SFF15) and Leonardo (Rafael Spregelburd, One Night of Love LATFF17) are a loving, middle-aged couple who have been together for a decade. Successful, happy and fully committed to each other, they would seem to have it all… until Martin’s announcement that he wants to adopt a child upends their lives. With Buenos Aires as a backdrop, these two men – Leonardo, an adopted child himself; and Martin, desperate to be a dad before he is too old – find themselves at a crossroad that may ruin their happy-everafter. A bizarre triangle is created when Martin is drawn to a female athlete who suggests he could be her biological sperm donor.
Using both humour and pathos to tell a touching tale about family, identity, change and insecurity, The Adopters comes based on the director Daniel Gimelberg’s own experience as a gay man and an adoptee. The honesty of his storytelling gives this film a refreshing authenticity that can’t help but touch at the hearts of audiences of all persuasions
Under the Same Roof (CTC) | BOOK TICKETS
Nadia (Sílvia Abril) and Adrian (Jordi Sánchez, Lord, Give Me Patience SFF18) may not love each other anymore, but one thing is certain: they love their home and neither is willing to give it up to the other. With the pressures of the 2008 economic crisis looming, the reality of the real estate market forces these bitter divorcees to dig in their heels and refuse to budge. Neither can afford to live elsewhere and they still have a mortgage to pay so, despite their growing hostility towards each other, they have no choice but to remain living together. Things rapidly turn from bad to worse with Nadia and Adrian losing sight of anything but their animosity towards each other.
Director Juana Macías makes light of a nasty and alltoo common domestic situation, taking Nadia and Adrian’s example into extreme but uproariously funny territory. Passions run high and patience runs low. Sex, hate and property ownership explode (with some surprisingly touching moments too) in a hilarious display of the flipside to wedded bliss.
Cross The Line (CTC) | BOOK TICKETS
A feverish nocturnal thriller featuring a stellar performance from Mario Casas, (My Big Night SFF16, Witching and Bitching SFF14) Cross the Line follows a good man who has an unexpected deadly confrontation. Dani (Casas) is a good guy who has dedicated the last few years of his life to taking care of his sick father. After his dad passes away, he decides it’s time to get his own life back on track and buys a round-the-world ticket. But before his journey begins, he meets Mila (Milena Smit), a young girl who is as attractive and sensual as she is disturbed and unstable.
What starts out as a night of adventure quickly turns into a living nightmare, taking Dani to extremes he could never have imagined. David Victori’s sophomore feature, for which he also penned the screenplay, spins Dani, a man who has never harmed a fly, into a frantic spiral of sex, drugs and violence. An intense and frenetic tale, Cross the Line delivers moral questions that will prompt audiences to reassess their most deeply held values.
Out in the Open (CTC) | BOOK TICKETS
Adapted from Jesús Carrasco’s best-selling novel, Out in the Open transports us back to 1946 Andalucía, in one of the most acclaimed Spanish films of 2019. An unnamed 12-year-old boy has escaped an intolerable situation and faces a journey through a country punished by drought and ruled by violence. Pursued by a vengeful search party, the child is alone, frightened and desperate. But his luck begins to turn when he meets a goatherder (Luis Tosar, Crime Wave SFF19) who decides to take the boy under his wing – a decision that will change both their destinies.
Tentatively at first, each becomes receptive to the idea of having the other in their life, and the stakes of their relationship rapidly increases as the boy’s pursuers get increasingly closer. The desolate world of Carrasco’s book is reimagined as a thrilling cinematic western, unflinching in its depiction of poverty and violence. The boy and the shepherd learn that together, there might be more to life than just surviving.
For session times, or to browse this year’s films, visit here.