IMDb > Butterfly (1999)
La lengua de las mariposas
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Butterfly (1999) More at IMDbPro »La lengua de las mariposas (original title)

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Butterfly -- Trailer


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Release Date:
18 August 2000 (USA) See more »
A magical tale about growing up in country growing apart. See more »
For Moncho, it's an idyllic year: he starts school, he has a wonderful teacher, he makes a friend in Roque... See more » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
6 wins & 19 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
A Rare and Insightful Film See more (46 total) »


  (in credits order)

Fernando Fernán Gómez ... Don Gregorio
Manuel Lozano ... Moncho
Uxía Blanco ... Rosa
Gonzalo Uriarte ... Ramón
Alexis de los Santos ... Andrés

Jesús Castejón ... D. Avelino
Guillermo Toledo ... O'Lis

Elena Bagutta ... Carmiña (as Elena Fernández)

Tamar Novas ... Roque
Tatán ... Roque Padre
Roberto Vidal Bolaño ... Boal (as Roberto Vidal)
Celso Parada ... Macias

Celso Bugallo ... Cura
Antonio Lagares ... Alcalde (as Tucho Lagares)
Milagros Jiménez ... Nena
Lara López ... Aurora
Alberto Castro ... Jose Maria
Diego Vidal ... Romualdo
Xosé Manuel Olveira 'Pico' ... Accordeon
Manuel Piñeiro ... Trumpet
Alfonso Cid ... Sax Player
Manuel Seara ... Sax Player
José Ramón Vieira ... String Bass
Antonio Pérez ... Singer
Eduardo Gómez ... Hombre pajarito sabio
Eva Fernández ... Neighbour #1
Fely Manzano ... Neighbour #2 (as Feli Manzano)
Jose F. Expolio ... Tight Rope Walker
Golfo ... Tarzan

Directed by
José Luis Cuerda 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Rafael Azcona  writer
José Luis Cuerda  writer
Manuel Rivas  writer

Produced by
Fernando Bovaira .... executive producer
José Luis Cuerda .... executive producer
Jose Maria Iresteiro .... associate producer
Mónica Martínez .... producer: sogetel
Myriam Mateos .... producer: sogetel
Ana Míguez .... assistant producer
Emiliano Otegui .... line producer
Original Music by
Alejandro Amenábar 
Cinematography by
Javier Salmones 
Film Editing by
Ignacio Cayetano Rodriguez 
Nacho Ruiz Capillas 
Production Design by
Josep Rosell 
Set Decoration by
Balter Gallart 
Costume Design by
Sonia Grande 
Makeup Department
Patricia López .... assistant makeup artist
Ana López-Puigcerver .... makeup designer (as Ana L. Puigcerver)
Belén López-Puigcerver .... assistant makeup artist (as Belén López Puigcerver)
Teresa Rabal .... hair stylist
Production Management
Emiliano Otegui .... production supervisor
José Picazo .... production manager (as Pepe Picazo)
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Mateo Gil .... assistant director
Pedro Loro .... assistant director
José Ramón Otegui .... assistant director
Walter Prieto .... assistant director
Paula Roca .... director trainee
Art Department
Orentino Fernández .... assistant props
José Luis Moya .... construction coordinator
Ramón Moya .... construction manager
Óscar Romero .... stand-by props
Sound Department
Sergio Bürmann .... boom operator (as Sergio Burmann)
Patrick Ghislain .... foley mixer
Patrick Ghislain .... re-recording mixer
Daniel Goldstein .... sound ) (as Goldstein (I)
Pelayo Gutiérrez .... sound editor
Nacho Royo-Villanova .... sound editor
Diego S. Staub .... dub recordist
Ricardo Steinberg .... sound (as Steinberg)
Ricardo Viñas .... dolby sound consultant
Dan Edelstein .... supervising sound editor: US release (uncredited)
Visual Effects by
José Rossi .... visual effects supervisor
Camera and Electrical Department
Arturo Aldegunde .... Steadicam operator
Pilar Aláez .... still photographer
Ricky Morgade .... assistant camera (as Ricardo R. Morgade)
Miguel Ángel Rodríguez .... gaffer
Edmundo Sanz .... key grip
Ángel Yebra .... assistant camera
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Ana Cuerda .... assistant costumer
Marina Rodríguez .... wardrobe
Dorinda Troitiño .... assistant wardrobe
Patricia Vazquez .... assistant wardrobe
Editorial Department
María José Almela .... assistant editor
Location Management
José Luis Carneiro .... location manager
Music Department
Lucio Godoy .... music producer
Mario Klemens .... musical director
Other crew
David Breijo .... production assistant
María Teresa Payero .... production secretary
Carmen Soriano .... script supervisor

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies
  • Visual Icon  exclusive clip and still licensing (uncredited)

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"La lengua de las mariposas" - Spain (original title)
"Butterfly's Tongue" - Philippines (English title), UK
"Butterfly Tongues" - USA
See more »
Rated R for a strong sex scene
96 min
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

La Muerte de TarzánSee more »


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9 out of 12 people found the following review useful.
A Rare and Insightful Film, 12 August 2002
Author: Howard Schumann from Vancouver, B.C.

Adapted by screenwriter Rafael Azcona from three stories in Manuel Rivas novel "Que Me Quieres, Amor", Butterfly is a rare and insightful coming-of-age story that takes place in a rural part of northern Spain during the Second Republic when Spain had a brief flirtation with socialism and democracy. Against a background of the growing clouds of the Spanish Civil War, the film depicts the relationship between asthmatic 7-year old Moncho (Manuel Lozano) and his liberal schoolteacher played by the great Spanish actor Fernando Fernan Gomez (All About my Mother, The Grandfather).

Butterfly does not directly involve politics (at least until the end) but tells its story through snapshots of young Moncho, In the beginning, he is a quiet, shy boy who is afraid go to school because he thinks his teacher, Don Gregorio, will hit him. Gregorio, however, is a kind spirit who teaches his students to appreciate poetry, the beauty of nature, and the spirit of loving one another. Moncho grows from a frightened child to an enthusiastic young boy who is eager to learn all that he can about life. He divides his time between following his older brother's exploits playing the saxophone in a local band and chasing butterflies with his teacher friend. The butterfly here seems to be a symbol both of freedom and transformation.

I felt very involved with this young boy's world and found Lozano to be one of the most beguiling child actors that I have seen in a long time. His performance alone saves the film from Miramax-type sentimentality (which it occasionally drifts towards). Gomez is also wonderful as the compassionate teacher, symbolizing the humanitarian government that Spain enjoyed before the onset of fascism.

Eventually, Moncho must choose between his love for the teacher who opened his eyes to the beauty and wonder of the natural world and the ugly pressures of his family and neighbors to take sides in the political conflict. With the ending as shocking and memorable as Truffaut's The 400 Blows, Butterfly powerfully illuminates the human cost of war.

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