Mommy's boy Juantxo is engaged. Dragged to the party by his friends Konradin and Paco, he loses his expensive wedding ring inside the body of a prostitute. Mafioso whorehouse owner ... See full summary »
Juanma Bajo Ulloa
Fernando Guillén Cuervo,
Alberto San Juan
Sex and politics collide in this tale of forbidden love, blackmail and murder. Set up by the secret police to compromise a prominent politician, a teenage hustler discovers himself ... See full summary »
Eloy de la Iglesia
María Luisa San José,
José Luis Alonso
In Madrid, the editor of the magazine Ziber-Arte, Alex Cuevas, is invited by Beatriz Bravo to participate in a conference about interpretation of dreams. After the lecture, the participant ... See full summary »
In Madrid, a petty thief who cannot adjust to life outside of jail puts together a theater troupe her friends -- a prostitute, a gypsy, and a Colombian immigrant -- in an attempt to make a go at a relatively straight life.
Victor is a man who gets to Paris to join his family around their seriously ill father, Max. As the chance of selling the family business begins to disrupt the family relationships, Victor ... See full summary »
Fernando Fernán Gómez,
As 1973 winds down, Franco is still governing Spain with an iron hand. Opposition parties are forbidden; labor movements are repressed; and Basque nationalists are mercilessly hunted down. ... See full summary »
Gian Maria Volontè,
Joao sells video tapes in road bars between Portugal and Spain. One day he finds a middle aged woman in the middle of nowhere. Somebody is looking for her and she has to escape to Lisboa. ... See full summary »
In 21st Century Spain, where apparently censorship does not exists anymore, there is a much subtler (but no less effective) new obstacle for the artists: censorship by omission. Anything can be filmed, but, if nobody is going to exhibit, then it does not exist! It happens in all kind of arts. You can compose any kind of music, but if nobody is going to release it, that music does not exist. It is, therefore, a concealed censorship. So art is no an artifact anymore, but just mere entertainment.
Antonio Hernández, whose first film, 1979's F.E.N., is one of those never praised enough hidden masterpieces of Spanish cinema, proves to be a very courageous auteur, because despite that censorship by omission of present times, paradoxically not present in 1979 (comes to mind names as diverse as Paulino Viota, Iván Zulueta or Eloy de la Iglesia himself), he dares to show all the immorality required by the story itself.
I don't understand why we've had to wait for the Spanish election campaign to finish for being able to see this film released. I don't understand either why its showing in theaters will be (and let's hope I'm wrong) quite limited. I'm afraid this being one more of those censorship by omission symptoms that I was referring to earlier. But El Menor De Los Males is a work of incalculable value for the times we live in.
The only reason why I rated it a 9 (and not a 10) is because the plot takes some time to develop. The first part flirts with different genres in an unnecessary way, in my opinion. Also I would have preferred someone less used to comedy for the main part. But once it takes off, El Menor De Los Males converts itself into an unstoppable artifact, effective and with no concessions. An overwhelming film experience.
Sometimes Antonio Hernandez's style still reminds me of F.E.N. The closer it is, the more I like it. That's why I liked En La Ciudad Sin Límites so much, and that's why I also like El Menor De Los Males. Specially, the film's epilogue (and I'm not spoiling anything), in which some people try very hard to get things back to normal after the storm, to no avail, it's very similar to the one on F.E.N.
I only hope more films like this to be released in a moment in which globalization reaches even parcels that some years before were full of activists: Culture and the Arts!
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