An elderly man , perfectly played by Fernando Rey , returns Spain because his son has left a note stating that one daughter is a bastard child
Good rendition with extraordinary performances and luxurious scenarios . This is the original rendition based on a notorious novel , being subsequently adapted in 1998 by Jose Luis Garci . This perceptible drama is based on Benito Perez Galdos's (author of Episodios Nacionales) novel and adapted by Rafael J Salvia about an old count comes back to Spain from abroad , after visiting America during the Gold Rush and losing his fortune and he hopes to find out which of his granddaughters is true , because his son has dead leaving two daughters . The countess De Lain named Lucrecia (Analia Gade , in recent version played by Cayetana Guillen Cuervo) along with his two daughters (Imma De Santis , Romay) return to Jerusia . But also the grandfather (Fernando Rey , subsequently performed by Fernando Fernan Gomez)goes back Spain after traveling America looking for the Dorado, but he is now ruined . The old man wants reckoning , because his son died and left a will stating which one of the two daughters is an illegitimate little girl . Later on, the elderly count is obligated by the Mayor , the priest (Jose Franco , in second version acted by Francisco Algora), the administrator (Rafael Alonso , posteriorly played by Agustin Gonzalez) and doctor to remain at a Monastery led by the prior (Armando Calvo , later played by Francisco Piquer) but Don Rodrigo escapes.
This is a thought-provoking drama filmed with great sensitivity and feeling. It's an intelligent and touching story although sometimes is slow moving and tiring but is finely developed with sense of style and sensibility. In the picture are treated ethics and morals themes developed in great sense of fairness and ductility. Excellent acting by Fernando Rey as an embittered man who returns because his son has died leaving two daughters, and the son has left a note stating that one of the two is a bastard child , the grandfather hopes to find out which is his true granddaughter , as he will have to face the traumatic truth and choose between honor and love . Secondary cast is frankly excellent , just like Jose Franco , Candida Losada , Armando Calvo , Gabriel Llopart , Angel Del Pozo and several others . Special mention to Rafael Alonso , only actor who acted in 1972 and 1998 version . Besides , exceptional and awesome cinematography by Jose Aguayo , it is reflected on the marvelous outdoors of the countryside and brilliant interiors ; however being necessary a right remastering . Wonderful musical score by Manuel Parada with haunting leitmotif . Well filmed on marvelous locations as Avila and Cantabria : Suances and Santillana Del Mar . Spectacular as well as evocative production design . The motion picture was well directed by veteran Rafael Gil . Rafael was one of the best filmmakers from Spanish cinema , directing several classic movies such as ¨Don Quijote De La Mancha¨ , ¨El Clavo¨ , ¨La Fe¨ , ¨La Señora De Fatima¨, ¨La Reina Santa¨ , ¨La Guerra De Dios¨ , ¨El Beso De Judas¨ , among others .
Rating : Better than average and well worth seeing. For these reasons is essential and indispensable watching and as good as the second version titled ¨El Abuelo¨ by Jose Luis Garci with Fernando Fernan Gomez , Calletana Guille, Fernando Guillen , Francisco Algora and again Rafael Alonso as Senen Corbacho .
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