Filmed like a documentary, "Sevillanas" consists of eleven short performances by Spain's most famous flamenco dancers, singers and guitarists. Saura, well-known for his flamenco films ("...
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As a hall fills with performers, a narrator says that flamenco came from Andalucia, a mix of Greek psalms, Mozarabic dirges, Castillian ballads, Jewish laments, Gregorian chants, African ... See full summary »
La Paquera de Jerez,
A group of flamenco dancers are rehearsing a very spanish version of the Prosper Merimee's drama. Antonio (the coreographer) falls in love with Carmen (the main dancer). Their story then ... See full summary »
Laura del Sol,
Paco de Lucía
In Madrid, the orphan sisters Irene, Ana and Maite are raised by their austere aunt Paulina together with their mute and crippled grandmother after the death of their mother and their ... See full summary »
Paulino and Carmela are husband and wife, troubadours touring the countryside during the Spanish Civil War. They are Republicans, and with their mute assistant, Gustavete, they journey into... See full summary »
The story of Salomé told as one of extreme love and vengeance. A director prepares a troupe of flamenco dancers for a performance. He summarizes the story and describes his spring for the ... See full summary »
Toledo in the 30s: The godfather of cinematic surrealism, Luis Buñuel, the poet Federico Garcia Loca and the painter Salvador Dalí are on a search for the mythical table of King Salomon, ... See full summary »
El Gran Wyoming,
Filmed like a documentary, "Sevillanas" consists of eleven short performances by Spain's most famous flamenco dancers, singers and guitarists. Saura, well-known for his flamenco films ("Blood Wedding," "Carmen"), here provides an in-depth look at the Sevillanas form of flamenco and its dancers. Written by
A superficial overquick run through a few of the better-known flamenco artists
For `Sevillanas' Carmen Saura had not much option but to use a documentary form, as he simply linked together in no order a dozen flamenco artists - singers, dancers and guitarists - in a bare 50 minutes. The result is short and sweet, but evidently brings no depth to the subject: you might just be watching one of those `canned' ready-made musical programmes which are not much more than several video clips strung together and hurled at you from one of those sky channels.
The film has its moments: above all the duet with Manolo Sanlúcar and Paco de Lucía - which of course was far too brief. One cannot describe the deep empathy that flows between musicians playing this kind of music. You have to watch it and feel it. I will deal more lengthily on this matter in my comments on the biographical documentary of Paco de Lucía in about a week or so when it appears on IMDb. The documentary was shown here together with `Sevillanas' in a thematic programme dedicated to this great musician.
`Sevillanas' is a job half done for those of us who seriously would like a wider exploration of these exceptional musical forms, so unique to Spain, but now so universally acclaimed. Another fifty-odd minutes might have done something to remedy this feeling. In `Calle 54' (qv) Fernando Trueba did a much better job of exploring contemporary Hispanic jazz, an exquisite jewel.
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