Perhaps the idea of "La noche y el alba" -"Night and Dawn"- started with a conversation between playwright Alfonso Sastre and director José María Forqué. It is difficult to know. What is clear is that the poor photographer who accidentally killed his girlfriend had been a Republican during the Spanish Civil War. A miserable man when the action begins, he has to face a well off couple belonging to the status quo. The husband was on the verge of becoming the dead girl's lover and the wife is a frustrated woman who knows that her prime has been lost somewhere along the line. These two worlds -the defeated and the winners- are very well translated into images by director José María Forqué, even when the film is sometimes cold, just like the weather. It was said that the Spanish communist party tried to pact an alliance with Franco's regime and that his movie must be watched as a document. But no matter what, it is an interesting experience to see the four central characters in hell. The well off wife tells to the audience: "To be born again it would be necessary to destroy all this that surround us". Four fine actors -the excellent Francisco Rabal as the photographer, Antonio Vilar as the industrialist, Zully Moreno as his wife and Rosita Arenas as the dead girl- make a strong effort to keep the movie going. Sometimes they can get it and some others, the film remains stuck. The Argentiean Zully Moreno shows that at the end of her career she had become, finally, an actress and not so much a star. A serious fiasco at the box office, it was a drawback for José María Forqué who didn't insist in this topics again. Pity, really. Abel Posadas
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