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Maria de Medeiros,
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Eloy de la Iglesia
María Luisa San José,
José Luis Alonso
Another of the reviews here has it right: the attraction of someone from a foreign and backwater culture very different from one's own to an affluent -- hence more powerful -- person whose own culture betrays elements of decadence is unlikely to portend anything good.
There is as well something of the whiff of upper class meets lower class here. I am reminded of Christopher Isherwood's opus in which that theme is played out in Berlin and Spain even as this one is. The writers of this novel and film are covering ground trod before. I do not find this questionable, and indeed I think there is a universal element at work here. That involves the age-old theme of someone with money and social standing besotted by a physically attractive and naive but appealing person who lacks those other attributes. Sometimes it works out, like Pygmalion, but most of the time it is doomed from the start.
The question here is whether the story or the film itself is any good. I thought it was something of a mixed bag. It seemed to me compelling in some parts, as in its vivid depiction of social and cultural distinctions or its clearly professional production values; but I felt less certain of the plot. Although the character of Daniel is completely open and obvious, and even Kyril is vaguely recognizable in both his person and background, the connections to third parties seem forced and improbable. It would have been a more successful film had it concentrated on developing internal conflict rather than hopping about Europe. Sometimes less is more.
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