The movie tells the story of a family of commediants that work in the towns of Spain during the 40's and 50's. Life gets very taugh for them since they cannot compete any longer with the ... See full summary »
As in the novel of the same title from Camilo Jose Cela, "La Colmena" is a sad composition with the stories of many people in the Madrid of 1942, just the postwar of the spanish civil war. ... See full summary »
Rodolfo and Petrita each live in separate quarters in dilapidated Madrid, while looking to have a little apartment (or "pisito", in Spanish dialect). Unfortunately their low salaries ... See full summary »
Isidoro M. Ferry
José Luis López Vázquez,
Concha López Silva
Paquita and her brother Venancio, both single and childish, live in a small town near Madrid. Their bossy eldest sister Ignacia, also an old maid, dominates them. One night, Paquita hears ... See full summary »
Fernando Fernán Gómez
"Les quatre vérités" aka "The Four Truths" is a movie anthology that consists of four segments, all loosely parodying fables from the 17th-century French poet Jean de la Fontaine. The US cut usually features only 3 segments.
In a small spanish town, a group of old ladies decide to celebrate Christmas Eve with a "Sit a poor man at your table" dinner: each wealthy household of the town will have a homeless person... See full summary »
Luis García Berlanga
José Luis López Vázquez,
This is only the third film I've watched from this Spanish director: the others were the compendium LES QUATRES VERITES (1962; the episode starring Hardy Kruger) and NOT ON YOUR LIFE (1963) - a veritable masterpiece often cited as the best Spanish film ever made - a black comedy dealing with capital punishment and featuring Italian star Nino Manfredi.
As with most film-makers hailing from this Mediterranean country, Berlanga's main concern are the vicissitudes and tribulations of man vis-a'-vis tradition and ongoing progress: here, therefore, we find an eminent and elderly nuclear scientist (Edmund Gwenn in his last role for the cinema) who suddenly disappears off the face of the earth - only to re-emerge in a tiny Spanish fishing community and attempting to lead an anonymous existence. However, his new vagabond lifestyle soon lands him in jail - except that the custodian is forced to let the inmates go on occasion because their presence is required elsewhere: for instance, Franco Fabrizi is a convicted smuggler who not only plays in the local band but also happens to be the cinema projectionist!
This allows the director to poke fun at figures of authority (there is also the priest who won't concede defeat even at a simple game of chess) but, at the same time, celebrate Spanish customs - such as religious processions, the corrida (unusual here in that it takes place near the sea-shore) and a rival display of fireworks (where Professor Gwenn's mathematical prowess certainly comes in handy, thus leading the people of Calabuch to victory for the first time - but, then, a snapshot of the occasion exposes his true identity and the modern world on the outside comes beckoning to him once more!).
The latter results in a somewhat anti-climactic 'curtain' as the Professor goes back to his former duty without so much as a struggle, either from the old man himself or the community which had come to appreciate and love him. In retrospect, the entire film disappoints - in that I had expected the satire to be of a more scathing nature...but the pleasant detail of unassuming everyday life and Gwenn's central performance are, nonetheless, enough to sustain considerable interest throughout.
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