In the summer of 1936, the beginning of the Spanish Civil War, a bourgeois family with many children, spending their holiday near Barcelona, tries to remain neutral between the Republicans and the supporters of General Franco.
How do you find a murderer amidst the chaos, death and destruction of the Second World War? On the Russian Front in the harsh winter of 1943, a series of bodies, hideously mutilated and ... See full summary »
Juan Diego Botto,
Escaping gangsters trying to kill her because of being witness to a crime, Gloria (Victoria Abril), a young woman of lower class, comes back to Madrid, Spain and to her family. There she ... See full summary »
Agustín Díaz Yanes
After his classes, a teacher is questioned by his wife, who mistrusted the academic project is plotting her husband. The teacher's intention is to create a "school of the Muses" inspired by... See full summary »
José Luis Guerín
Julian, a middle-aged single doctor, meets his childhood friend Pablo again. The latter is back from Africa and has just married a beautiful young blonde, Elena. Julian falls in love with ... See full summary »
José Luis López Vázquez,
A family experiences two traumatic events in a lapse of forty-odd years: the loss of one of the family members and how this affects the others; and the arrival of new neighbors, strangers, who upset the family and supposed social harmony.
When the Spanish Republic is declared in 1931, three brothers go separate ways. One, a priest, is killed by leftists. One, a member of the government, betrays his family's traditional ideals. The third fights on the side of Franco to defend them.
The film was re-release in July 3 1950 with a new title, "Espíritu de una raza", and six minutes less of footage. Since Spain was by then an US ally, Franco's censors decided to cut all the scenes containing fascist salutes and add some dialogues to underline the anti-communist sense of the movie, instead of its former totalitarian spirit. See more »
First of all, I want to clear up something: I love Britain. I love the British people. In many aspects, I feel British. (You could put the music from "West Side Story" to this affirmation: "I feel British, oh so British..."). I´m a citizen of the world. But I cannot help feeling indignant when someone tries to pull my leg, as some British character like pseudo-historian Paul Preston or so is attempting to do.
I don´t want to be boring, but I must insist about my age. I was born in 1919, so I DO know the era that "Raza" deals with. Everything that the film says is true, although it is presented in a very mild and benevolent way. The pursuit against the Catholic church is true. The hate of militiamen towards priests, monks, nuns and Catholic people in general is true. The shootings in the red zone (and the word "red" is not offensive - the left-wingers called themselves that way) are true. (For a better information, I recommend the books written about the subject by the former member of the GRAPO Pío Moa.) Believe me, I DO KNOW SOMETHING.
I want to set the record straight: I don´t like to speak badly about ANYONE, but the Truth is my best friend and I must be faithful to it. The thing is that we are talking about a film. I´m completely against Communism and that doesn´t prevent me from liking "Potemkin". I´m not a Nazi, but I like "Triumph Of The Will". And "Potemkin", judging by what I have read about the subject, is very inaccurate from a historical point of view; "Raza" isn´t. It is a no-nonsense picture. But most of all it´s a very good movie: the actors are wonderful (particularly Ana Mariscal - what a woman!), the direction is impeccable and the semi-documentary tone of the whole work is successful. I´ll say it again: the assassination of the monks on the beach is among the best cinematic scenes I have ever seen, and I cry every time I watch it. Because, unfortunately, that was only (sorry to say) too true. The fact that I´m a certain age doesn´t make me dodder or drivel, thank God.
Other films, like "La Caza", "Furtivos" or "El Espíritu De La Colmena", have tried to tell a different story, but the degree of success is uneasy: "La Caza" (one of whose leading actors, by the way, is the great Alfredo Mayo, the protagonist of "Raza") is a good film (maybe the best film of Carlos Saura, which is not saying much), but it´s not a film about the war, but rather about the aftermath of the war, and it doesn´t reflect at all a reality; those facts didn´t exist in the 60s (or, at least, they were not a general attitude). And as for "Furtivos" or "El Espíritu De La Colmena", they also depict a society later than the war (not the war itself, and still less the pre-war) and, for all their fame and prizes, they are (from a strictly cinematographic and non-political point of view) small pieces of blatant rubbish.
Before I say goodbye, I must stress something: hate is not a good advisor. And profanities and obscene language are no good, especially when headed for someone who is dead and therefore cannot defend himself. Please, let´s calm down a little bit. May people read good books and learn the truth. I hope that, as in Charles Laughton´s great film "Night Of The Hunter", love ends up defeating hate. God bless you.
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