American Cinematheque presents

RECENT SPANISH CINEMA
February 26 - March 13, 1999
Presented in collaboration with

The MINISTERIO DE EDUCACION & CULTURA, SGAE, FUNDACION AUTOR, INSTITUTO DE LA MUJER, ICEX

A Special Tribute to legendary director Carlos Saura (CARMEN, BLOOD
WEDDING) leads off the Cinematheque’s sixth annual survey of Recent Spanish
Cinema -- our largest series so far, with 15 new features including Santiago
Segura’s hilariously-twisted TORRENTE - THE DUMB ARM OF THE LAW (Spain’s
biggest box-office hit ever) and the third film from wild-child director
Alex de la Iglesia, the savage, sexy PERDITA DURANGO. Our series opens with
two films from established Spanish directors: THINGS I LEFT IN HAVANA, a
bittersweet comedy of three Cuban sisters adrift in modern Madrid, from
Manuel Gutiérrez Aragón (HALF OF HEAVEN, DEMONS IN THE GARDEN); and the
ultra-erotic thriller BETWEEN YOUR LEGS, from director Manuel Gomez Pereira
(MOUTH TO MOUTH).

The remarkable explosion of new Spanish talent is still going strong, with
two stunningly inventive comedies by first-time directors Javier Fesser (THE
MIRACLE OF P. TINTO) and Miguel Albadalejo (THE FIRST NIGHT OF MY LIFE) --
as well as rich urban dramas from break-out directors Fernando León (BARRIO)
and Salvador García Ruiz (MENSAKA). This year’s series also includes a
special “Women In Spanish Cinema” Showcase [see sidebar], highlighting the
growing number of female directors and screenwriters helping to redefine
Spanish filmmaking.

We’re very pleased to welcome as our guests for the series: directors
Carlos Saura, Manuel Gutiérrez Aragón, Manuel Gomez Pereira, María Ripoll
and Pilar Tavora; actors Carmelo Gomez and Aitana Sanchez Gijon;
screenwriters Angeles Gonzalez Sinde and Elvira Lindo; and producers Andrés
Vicente Gómez, Gerardo Herrero, Cesar Benitez and Fernando Bovaira.

Finally, we are saddened by the recent and unexpected death of director
Ricardo Franco (BLACK TEARS), one of Spain’s most accomplished filmmakers --
who brought us last year’s masterful, Goya Award-winning LUCKY STAR and the
documentary AFTER ALL THESE YEARS (featured in our 1995 series.) A
brilliant director, Ricardo will be sorely missed.


RECENT SPANISH CINEMA is presented with the special cooperation of IBERIA
AIRLINES and LLADRO.

All films in Spanish with English subtitles, except as noted.


Series compiled by Dennis Bartok and Angel Gil Orrios, with the assistance
of Gwen Deglise. Shorts Programmed by Andrew Crane.

Special Thanks to: Carmelo Romero/MINISTERIO DE EDUCACION Y CULTURA; Manuel
Gutiérrez Aragón/SGAE; Carlos Cuadros/FUNDACION AUTOR; Julia Laparra/LLADRO;
Hermino Morales/CONSUL GENERAL OF SPAIN IN LOS ANGELES; Genaro
Gonzalez/COMMERCIAL CONSUL OF SPAIN IN LOS ANGELES; Wendy Lidell/FOX LORBER; Dennis O’Connor/TRIMARK PICTURES; KIT PARKER FILMS.

Featuring a Special Tribute to
CARLOS SAURA In-Person!

The most internationally-renowned Spanish filmmaker, second only to Luis
Buñuel -- for whom he was assistant for several years -- director Carlos
Saura barely needs introduction. In a career spanning over four decades,
since his debut film LOS GOLFOS (THE HOOLIGANS) in 1959, Saura has written
and directed over 30 features, moving with ease from brilliant,
multi-layered dramas (PEPPERMINT FRAPPE, CRIA CUERVOS) to comedies (AY
CARMELA!), to his rapturous series of dance films (CARMEN, BLOOD WEDDING,
the just-released TANGO) -- arguably the most beautiful and influential
films ever made on the art of dance.

Born in Huesca in 1932, Saura lived in Madrid, Barcelona and Valencia
during the Spanish Civil War. He became interested in photography, and
participated in several exhibitions before studying directing at the Spanish
Film Institute (later the Official Film School.) After graduating, Saura
taught classes on screenwriting and directing, and soon after, took over as
Director of the Film School (he resigned in 1964 for political reasons.)
With his first film LOS GOLFOS and his later LA CAZA and PEPPERMINT FRAPPE,
Saura established himself as the most visible and outspoken director of the
New Spanish Cinema of the 1960’s and 70’s, a group that included
fellow-directors Jose Luis Borau, Vicente Aranda and Manuel Gutiérrez
Aragón. His landmark 1975 drama CRIA CUERVOS won the Special Jury Prize at
Cannes, and still stands with Erice’s SPIRIT OF THE BEEHIVE as one of the
sublime achievements of modern Spanish filmmaking.

With his first flamenco-dance film, BLOOD WEDDING, in 1981, Saura began a
stunning collaboration with choreographer Antonio Gades that resulted in
CARMEN and LOVE, THE MAGICIAN -- a joyous, erotic celebration of bodies in
motion, fire and song. Currently, Saura is working on an epic biography of
painter Francisco Goya, scheduled for release later this year.


WOMEN IN SPANISH CINEMA SHOWCASE

4 Filmmakers In-Person!!

Over the past decade, female directors and screenwriters have fought with
increasing success to establish themselves as a significant artistic and
commercial force in Spanish filmmaking -- from Basque director Arantxa
Lazcano (THE DARK YEARS), to actress-turned-director Icíar Bollain (HI, ARE
YOU ALONE), to the late Pilar Miro (DOG IN THE MANGER), the most
internationally-acclaimed of Spanish female filmmakers.

This special 4-film showcase, sponsored by the Instituto de la Mujer,
highlights the work of two first-time directors: actress-turned-filmmaker
Pilar Tavora, with the richly-textured Lorca adaptation YERMA; and María
Ripoll, whose enchanting comedy TWICE UPON A YESTERDAY will be released here
by TriMark Pictures. We’re also pleased to welcome two of Spain’s most
accomplished screenwriters: Angeles Gonzalez Sinde, who co-wrote Ricardo
Franco’s LUCKY STAR and his last film, BLACK TEARS; and 22-year old Elvira
Lindo, with the ambitious, multi-character comedy THE FIRST NIGHT OF MY
LIFE.

Friday, February 26 - 7:00 PM
Carlos Saura Tribute
Carlos Saura In-Person - New 35 mm. Print!! CARMEN, 1983, 102 min. Saura’s
most ravishing, unforgettable flamenco film, CARMEN is based on Mérimée’s
novel, with music by Bizet and Paco de Lucía. Dancer/choreographer Antonio
Gades (with whom Saura also made BLOOD WEDDING and LOVE, THE MAGICIAN) falls
madly in love with the sensational Laura del Sol (in her film debut) as the
gypsy Carmen. Winner of the Special Jury Prize at Cannes, and Best Foreign
Film Awards in United Kingdom, Germany and Japan. “Laura del Sol is an
explosion of beauty and risk ... With Gades, Saura has created a unique,
lithe, sensual organism.” -- Stanley Kaufmann, New Republic. Discussion
following with director Carlos Saura.


Friday, February 26 - 9:45 PM
Manuel Gutiérrez Aragón and Gerardo Herrero In-Person!
COSAS QUE DEJE EN LA HABANA (THINGS I LEFT IN HAVANA), 1998, 110 min. Dir.
Manuel Gutiérrez Aragón. Three resourceful Cuban sisters (Violeta
Rodríguez, Broselianda Hernández and Isabel Santos) struggle to find a place
for themselves in modern Spain, in Aragón’s warm, wonderful comedy of lost
dreams and new beginnings. Heartthrob Jorge Perugorría (STRAWBERRIES AND
CHOCOLATE) co-stars as a womanizing Cuban emigrant who falls for the
youngest of the sisters, Nena -- and finds memories of the old country
flooding back in. Discussion following with director Manuel Gutiérrez
Aragón and producer Gerardo Herrero.


Saturday, February 27 - 4:00 PM
Carlos Saura Tribute
Carlos Saura In-Person - New 35 mm. Print! CRIA CUERVOS (RAISE CROWS),
1975, 115 min. With Geraldine Chaplin. The marvelous, almost otherworldly
Ana Torrent (SPIRIT OF THE BEEHIVE, THESIS) stars as an 8-year old girl who
is convinced she holds the power of life and death over her house’s
inhabitants. The title refers to an old Spanish saying: “Raise crows and
they’ll peck out your eyes.” Winner of the Special Jury Award at Cannes,
CRIA CUERVOS is Saura at his very best -- mysterious, breathtaking,
inescapable. “Ana Torrent, Conchita Perez and Maite Sanchez Alexandros
constitute the most extraordinary incarnations of childhood I have seen on
the screen. To watch these three girls ... is to see childhood at long last
as a jungle of wild feelings in which death is stared at without
flinching” -- Andrew Sarris, Village Voice. Discussion following with
director Carlos Saura.


Saturday, February 27 - 7:00 PM
Carmelo Gomez, Manuel Gomez Pereira and César Benitez In-Person!
ENTRE LAS PIERNAS (BETWEEN YOUR LEGS), 1998, 121 min. Dir. Manuel Gomez
Pereira. From the master of Spanish comedies (MOUTH TO MOUTH, LOVE CAN
SERIOUSLY DAMAGE YOUR HEALTH) comes this white-hot thriller about sex
addiction, starring three of Spain’s most acclaimed (and gorgeous)
performers: Victoria Abril (LOVERS, HIGH HEELS), Javier Bardem (LIVE FLESH,
GOLDEN BALLS), and Carmelo Gómez (THE DOG IN THE MANGER, TIERRA.) Abril
stars a successful radio-announcer with a jones for anonymous sex in the
park, who meets hot-shot screenwriter Bardem in group therapy. Their
adulterous affair quickly consumes everyone in close range -- including
Abril’s police-inspector husband, played with dark, fierce intensity by
Gomez. Discussion following with actor Carmelo Gómez, director Manuel Gómez
Pereira and producer César Benitez.


Saturday, February 27 - 10:00 PM
New from Alex de la Iglesia! PERDITA DURANGO, 1997, 126 min. Based on the
novel by pulp author Barry Gifford (who wrote Lynch’s WILD AT HEART),
PERDITA DURANGO is an explosive cocktail of murder, sex and strange
passions, from director Alex de la Iglesia (DAY OF THE BEAST.) Rosie Perez
(THE 24 HOUR WOMAN) stars as the sensous Perdita Durango, who dreams every
night of a jaguar licking her body -- until she collides with Romeo (Javier
Bardem, from GOLDEN BALLS), a handsome killer and bankrobber who dabbles in
santeria rituals. After kidnapping a well-bred American couple, Perdita and
Romeo take a one-way ride from Mexico to Las Vegas -- a warped, wicked
journey through the underbelly of the American Dream, Sam Peckinpah meets
GUN CRAZY by way of Russ Meyer. (In English.) Producer Andrés Vicente
Gómez to introduce screening.


Tuesday, March 2 - 7:00 PM
Women in Spanish Cinema Showcase:
Aitana Sánchez Gijón and Pilar Távora In-Person! YERMA, 1998, 114 min.
Dir. Pilar Távora. A rich, mournful adaptation of García Lorca’s classic
drama, YERMA stars the stunning Aitana Sánchez Gijón (MOUTH TO MOUTH,
CHAMBERMAID ON THE TITANIC) in her finest performance to date, as the
strong-willed wife of a peasant farmer who finds herself rebelling against a
life of hardship and loneliness. Juan Diego co-stars as Yerma’s
honest-but-tormented husband, with Irene Papas as the local sorceress who
tries to ease her anguish. Discussion following with actress Aitana Sánchez
Gijón and director Pilar Távora.


Tuesday, March 2 - 9:45 PM
SUS OJOS SE CERRARON... (TANGOS ARE FOR TWO), 1998, 94 min. Director Jaime
Chavarri transports us back to the Buenos Aires of the 1930’s, for this
spellbinding musical drama about an unknown tango singer, Renzo (played by
Argentinian Darío Grandinetti) who falls passionately in love with the
feisty Juanita (Aitana Sánchez Gijón). Renzo’s life changes dramatically
when she convinces him to impersonate the famous singer Gardel. A must-see
for tango lovers! Actress Aitana Sánchez Gijón scheduled to introduce
screening.


Wednesday, March 3 - 7:00 PM
Women in Spanish Cinema Showcase:
Angeles González Sinde In-Person! LAGRIMAS NEGRAS (BLACK TEARS)
1998, 104 min. Director Ricardo Franco’s final film (he died during
production, and the film was finished by Fernando Bauluz), BLACK TEARS
follows the tender, tragic arc of two lovers who meet violently one night.
Fele Martínez (THESIS, OPEN YOUR EYES) stars as a quiet young man who is
robbed on the street by the mentally-unstable Ariadna Gil (LIBERTARIANS,
BELLE EPOQUE) -- this chance encounter leads to unexpected consequences, as
Martínez devotes himself body and soul to saving Gil from her own demons.
Discussion following with screenwriter Angeles González Sinde.


Wednesday, March 3 - 9:30 PM
Carlos Saura Tribute - Double Feature:
New 35 mm. Prints! LOS GOLFOS (THE HOOLIGANS), 1959, 86 min. Inspired by
the work of Luis Buñuel, Saura’s acclaimed first film is a savage,
uncompromising portrait of a teenage gang (played by real delinquents), who
plan a burglary of a large factory in order to finance the bullfighting
career of a friend. Delayed time and again by the censors during
production, LOS GOLFOS was the “most difficult” film in my career”
(Saura) -- and a landmark in Spanish cinema, roughly equal in impact to
Rossellini’s ROME OPEN CITY in Italy.
DEPRISA, DEPRISA (FAST, FAST), 1981, 98 min. With Jose Valdelomar, Jose
Hervas Roldan, Berta Zarco. 22 years after LOS GOLFOS, Saura returned to
the streets of Madrid for this shattering study of a group of four
teenagers, seemingly “born to die young,” who decide (against overwhelming
odds) to rob a bank. “Edited for staccato emphasis, unrelentingly hopeless
... Saura drops all theorizing in favor of a straight punch to the
stomach” -- L.A. Weekly. Winner of the Golden Bear at the Berlin Film
Festival.


Thursday, March 4 - 7:00 PM
Women in Spanish Cinema Showcase:
María Ripoll In-Person! TWICE UPON A YESTERDAY (LLUVIA EN LOS ZAPATOS),
1998, Trimark, 93 min. Dir. Maria Ripoll. With Penélope Cruz. A charming
fable of lost love and second chances in the spirit of Gabriel Garcia
Marquez and Mario Vargas Llosa, TWICE UPON A YESTERDAY stars Douglas
Henshall (ANGELS AND INSECTS) as a struggling British actor (and constant
womanizer) who is desperate to reconnect with ex-girlfriend Lena Headey.
One drunken, hopeless night, Henshall meets a pair of garbage collectors --
who manage to transport him back in time 8 months, for another opportunity
to change his cheating ways. Discussion following with director María
Ripoll.


Thursday, March 4 - 9:45 PM
Carlos Saura Tribute - Double Feature:
New 35 mm. Print! PEPPERMINT FRAPPE, 1967, 94 min. Dir. Carlos
One of Saura’s acknowledged masterpieces, available for years only in faded
prints, PEPPERMINT FRAPPE is an ecstatic, masochistic whirl of a thriller,
revolving around the obsessions of an aging provincial doctor who falls
madly in love with his brother’s blonde bride, played by Geraldine Chaplin.
Convinced that Chaplin is identical to a woman he met a year ago, the doctor
pursues her into a blind-alley of madness and murder. “Reminiscent of the
perversely beautiful noirs in color that Chabrol made in the 60’s in homage
to Hitchcock.” -- Marsha Kinder, Blood Cinema. “Casts a weird, almost
diabolic spell” -- Variety.
LA CAZA (THE HUNT)
1965, 88 min. With Ismael Merlo, Alfredo Mayo, Jose Maria Prada, Emilio
Caba. Sam Peckinpah once claimed that LA CAZA changed his life when he saw
it -- and Saura’s brutal masterpiece of horror and suspense, fragile
friendships and political violence easily rivals STRAW DOGS in its sheer
intensity. Three buddies from the Civil War decide to go hunting for
rabbits one Sunday morning -- and as the day progresses, THE HUNT slowly
evolves into an unnerving fight for survival among the apparent “friends”.
“Everything in the film -- its claustrophobic narrative, its spare
landscapes, ... its percussive music and montage, its oppressive silences
and ellipses ... moves inexorably towards that explosive shootout” -- Marsha
Kinder, Blood Cinema.


Friday, March 5 - 7:00 PM
1998 Goya Awards - Best Director and Screenplay!
BARRIO (NEIGHBORHOOD), 1998, 99 min. Dir. Fernando León. Three foulmouthed
teenagers (brilliantly played by Críspulo Cabezas, Timy and Eloi Yebra)
spend their days talking about all the things they don’t have: girlfriends,
sex lives, money and a way out of the barrio. One of the most impressive
new films from Spain, BARRIO is a bleak, often hilarious look at dead-end
lives and the stubborn spirit of resistance -- in the style of Kevin Smith’s
CLERKS and Richard Linklater’s SUBURBIA.


Friday, March 5 - 9:30 PM
Biggest box-office hit in Spanish film history!
TORRENTE, EL BRAZO TONTO DE LA LEY (THE DUMB ARM OF THE LAW), 1998, 99 min.
With Javier Camara, Chus Lampreave, Tony Leblanc. Dir. Santiago Segura.
“Whiskey and coke -- a little fuel for the body,” cackles overweight ex-cop
Torrente, just before he engages in a non-stop sleaze-fest of racial jokes,
tropical sex fantasies and kung-fu action, in director/actor Santiago Segura
’s monster black comedy. About as brainy as your average episode of “The
Dukes of Hazzard,” TORRENTE is a great, filthy mix of slapstick comedy and
jawdropping raunch -- imagine this at a drive-in in the 70’s with a case of
Coors in the back, and you know what you’re in for. Winner of the 1998 Goya
Award for Best New Director.

Saturday, March 6 - 4:00 PM
WOMEN IN SPANISH CINEMA SEMINAR
Featuring an in-depth roundtable discussion with directors María Ripoll and
Pilar Távora, and screenwriters Angeles González Sinde and Elvira Lindo.
Free admission.


Saturday, March 6 - 7:00 PM
Women in Spanish Cinema Showcase:
Elvira Lindo In-Person! LA PRIMERA NOCHE DE MI VIDA (THE FIRST NIGHT OF MY
LIFE), 1998, Fox Lorber, 85 min. With Carlos Fuentes, Leonor Watling,
Mariola Fuentes. Director Miguel Albadalejo’s first feature is a touching
and inventive fantasy about the ups and downs of a series of characters
pushed to the limit during New Year’s Eve 1999. Newly-weds expecting their
first child ... A rich man lost in the land of the forgotten, discovering
another dimension of life ... Beggars, thieves, tourists, taxi drivers,
police officers -- all come together at the crucial moment when the clock
strikes twelve. “There are moments when you see the characters as being
very lonely, in a kind of lunar landscape” -- Elvira Lindo. Discussion
following with screenwriter Elvira Lindo.


Saturday, March 6 - 9:45 PM
EL MILAGRO DE P. TINTO (THE MIRACLE OF P. TINTO), 1998, 106 min. With
Silvia Casanova, Pablo Pinedo. A surprise hit at this year’s Sundance
Festival, director Javier Fesser’s first feature is a surreal comedy in the
spirit of Terry Gilliam, about a childish old man (played by the marvelous
Luis Ciges) whose only wish is to have a large family and live happily ever
after. Filled with amazing visual inventiveness and charm, THE MIRACLE OF
P. TINTO is a dazzling little gem -- don’t miss this one!


Tuesday, March 9 - 7:00 PM
LOS AÑOS BARBAROS (THE STOLEN YEARS), 1998, 120 min. With Ernesto Alterio,
Hedy Burress, Juan Echanove. Dir. Fernando Colomo. Madrid, 1947: a group
of student radicals paint “Long Live Free University!” on the side of their
college -- and soon find themselves breaking rocks on one of Franco’s chain
gangs. If this sounds like heavy drama -- think again. THE STOLEN YEARS is
a sexy, high-spirited road movie in the tradition of Bogdanovich’s PAPER
MOON, following the young dreamers as they bust out of prison and flee
across Spain in a flashy red convertible. One of Spain’s brightest young
actors, Jordi Mollá (LUCKY STAR) stars in director Fernando Colomo’s finest
film to date -- a wry, sentimental look at innocence and the hard path to
experience.


Tuesday, March 9 - 9:30 PM
Carlos Saura Tribute:
LA PRIMA ANGELICA (COUSIN ANGELICA), 1973, 105 min. A man (José Luis López
Vázquez) returns to his home-town for the first time in 30 years to bury his
mother’s bones in the family vault -- and finds himself falling hopelessly
in love again with his cousin Angelica (Lina Canalejas.) A shimmering,
unforgettable blend of past and present, memory and passion, COUSIN ANGELICA
is Saura’s masterful attempt “to explain the Spanish Civil War to a
generation too young to have fought in it” (Roger Mortimore.) “Things are
not as we see them but as we remember them.” -- Saura. Winner of the Jury
Special Prize, Cannes.


Wednesday, March 10 - 7:00 PM
TREN DE SOMBRAS (TRAIN OF SHADOWS), 1997, 80 min. Dir. José Luis Guerin.
In the early hours of November 8th, 1930, a Parisian lawyer and amateur
filmmaker named Gerard Fleury left his home -- and wound up dead, under
still-mysterious circumstances. Over 60 years later, filmmaker/detective
Guerin (INNISFREE) attempts to reconstruct Fleury’s final home-movie -- and
in turn, come closer to the elusive details of Fleury’s death. If you’re a
fan of Peter Greenaway’s work (VERTICAL FEATURES REMAKE, THE DRAUGHTSMAN’S
CONTRACT) -- be sure to catch this haunting documentary-fiction from one of
Spain’s most intriguing (and rarely-seen) directors. “I have tried to
recover some of those impressions which influenced early filmmaking ... to
conjure up the dead, a theme which inspired such mythical titles as Dreyer’s
ORDET, Hitchcock’s VERTIGO and Dieterle’s PORTRAIT OF JENNIE” -- Guerin.

Wednesday, March 10 - 9:15 PM
“RECENT SPANISH SHORTS” Program
Approx. 90 min. Six shorts by new directors, including: “Txotx”, 15 min.
Dir. Asier Altuna & T. Esnal. A family dispute over meat leads to too much
drink. “La Raya” (The Line), 28 min. Dir. Andrés M. Koppel. Set in the
1890’s on the Canary Islands, this humorous historical drama concerns the
changing of the zero meridian. “El Topo Y El Hada” (The Mole And the
Fairy), 8 min. Dir. Grojo. A silent, surrealistic piece. “Por Un Infante
Difunto” (For A Dead Infant), 8 min. Dir. Tineblas Gonzalez. A scathing
look at the root of violence: the family. “Solo En La Buhardilla” (Alone
In The Loft), 20 min. Dir. M.A. Rodriguez. An attic is the setting for the
stages of a man’s life. “Rufino”, 14 min. Dir. Octavi Masiá.


Thursday, March 11 - 9:30 PM
Carlos Saura Tribute:
U.S. Premiere - Director’s Cut! New 35 mm. Print!! EL DORADO, 1987, 151
min. With Lambert Wilson. Never released in the U.S., EL DORADO is Saura’s
epic version of one of the greatest and bloodiest expeditions in history:
Governor Pedro de Ursua’s campaign to find the mythical Seven Cities of Gold
in the Amazon jungle. Omero Antonutti (from the Taviani Bros.’ PADRE
PADRONE) stars as the deranged, glory-seeking Lope de Aguirre -- whose
mutinous rebellion also inspired Herzog’s magnificent AGUIRRE, THE WRATH OF
GOD.


Friday, March 12 - 7:00 PM
LA HORA DE LOS VALIENTES (TIME OF THE BRAVE), 1998, 117 min. Dir. Antonio
Mercero. A film of quiet power and mystery, LA HORA DE LOS VALIENTES
follows a young art-curator (Gabino Diego, from LOVE CAN SERIOUSLY DAMAGE
YOUR HEALTH) who rescues a luminous Goya self-portrait during the first days
of the Spanish Civil War. Huddled in a bomb shelter, Diego meets another
lost soul in need of saving: the exquisite Leonor Watling, as a young
mother whose home and family have been ripped away. With a masterful use of
light and shadow, tenderness and violence, director Mercero paints his own
memorable portrait of two lovers stranded by the chaos of the Civil War.


Friday, March 12 - 9:30 PM
Carlos Saura Tribute - Double Feature:
New 35 mm. Print! EL AMOR BRUJO (LOVE, THE MAGICIAN), 1986, 103 min. Saura
’s climactic third film -- after BLOOD WEDDING and CARMEN -- in his
unparalleled flamenco-dance collaboration with the renowned
performer/choreographer Antonio Gades. Set to the haunting music of Falla,
four star-crossed gypsy lovers in a contemporary Spanish town work out their
destinies through the magic of dance. Co-starring the fiery flamenco dancer
Cristina Hoyos. “[EL AMOR BRUJO) is the ideal setting for love both true
and false, jealousy, ghosts, and of course, seething desire ... Saura keeps
the edge on this fantasy until the spectacular Fire Dance, burning a hole in
the screen under a blood-red sky” -- Village Voice.
New 35 mm. Print! AY, CARMELA!, 1990, 105 min. With Gabino Diego. Carmen
Maura (WOMEN ON THE VERGE OF A NERVOUS BREAKDOWN) and Andrés Pajares (BWANA)
star as two vaudeville performers trapped behind the lines with Franco’s
troops during the Civil War. Like his mentor and friend Buñuel, Saura mixes
razor-sharp comedy and political allegory here into a
devilishly-entertaining brew. Maura’s performance as the sensuous, defiant
Carmela -- ultimately stronger than any of the men around her -- is one of
her very best.

Saturday, March 13 - 7:00 PM
MENSAKA: Páginas de una historia (Pages Of A Story), 1998, 105 min.
Director Salvador García Ruiz’s brash, energetic portrait of young Spain
follows the trials of a group of struggling musicians (Gustavo Salmerón,
Tristán Ulloa and Adriá Collado) who’ve just been offered a record deal.
Swarming all around them, weaving in and out of their lives, is a stream of
coke-dealers, girlfriends, family members and managers -- each threatening
to pull the band apart before it succeeds.


Saturday, March 13 - 9:30 PM
Carlos Saura Tribute - Double Feature

Barren rehearsal hall, shot without dialogue, BLOOD WEDDING is Saura’s
awesome version of García Lorca’s most famous play -- in which a young bride
(Cristina Hoyos) runs off with her married lover (choreographer Antonio
Gades), and find themselves pursued by the insanely-jealous groom and his
family. “A magnificently-realized flamenco-ballet ... Gades is simply
phenomenal, his dancing and choreography are as close to perfection as a
dancer can get.” -- The Film Journal.
SEVILLANAS, 1992, 52 min. Our series closes with Saura’s anthology of the
best performers of this popular style of Andalucian song and dance -- the
most wide-spread type of flamenco. A stylized April Fair provides the
setting for a gathering of Spain’s leading flamenco artists: singers Lola
Flores, Rocío Jurado and Camarón de la Isla; guitarists Paco de Lucía,
Manolo Sanlúcar and Tomatito; and dancers Manuela Carrasco, Merche Esmeralda
and Matilde Coral - !

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