The "Los Alfaques" campground is a much-loved, much-visited holiday destination. Reveling holidaymakers, families, groups, couples and singles. Lots of skin, fun and frolicking on the beach... See full summary »
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Suzanne von Borsody,
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The "Los Alfaques" campground is a much-loved, much-visited holiday destination. Reveling holidaymakers, families, groups, couples and singles. Lots of skin, fun and frolicking on the beach. The blazing sun, the rush of the waves, the carefree racket kicked up by the children are what make "Los Alfaques" a seaside paradise. Nothing seems able to destroy this idyllic scene. People on holiday: relaxation, fun and harmony. But holidays bring to light problems which are normally put up with or suppressed in the day-to-day routine. On holiday, feelings, anxieties, hopes and wishes are, so to speak, lived and experienced under intensified conditions. When, in situations like these, life itself is thrown into deadly danger, every decision must be made directly in the face of eternity. Everything unspoken and unfinished threatens to become a lifelong curse. In extreme situations, human beings turn to what is really important to them. The otherwise-so-obvious option of making good for ... Written by
Though the date of the disaster and many of the circumstances surrounding the accident were kept in the script, all the names were changed to not hurt sensibilities. For example, the camping's name was changed from the real "Los Alfaques" to "Las Arecales", and the company owner of the truck, "Enpetrol", to "SAG-GAS". All the personal stories, including the one of the truck driver and his son, are fictionalized ones too. See more »
In a scene in front of the local hospital, we see, among other cars, an Opel Kadett D. That car was introduced in 1979, and could not have been there in 1978. See more »
I missed the first 10-15 minutes of this film, such that it was a while before I cottoned on to what the film was about; when I did catch on I was utterly disheartened.
The film is loosely based on real facts: one dreadfully fateful day, just thirty years ago, a large tanker truck laden with highly combustible fuel went out of control, charged off the road and ploughed into the middle of a packed camping-site called "Los Alfaques" near Tarragona, Spain. The result was a couple of hundred killed and a couple of hundred others injured, mostly from burns, from the ensuing frightful explosion.
That such a horrendous subject matter should become the attention of some TV-film company near 30 years later is evidently open to very heavy criticism, to say the least. It is an appalling affront to anyone's sensibilities who can clearly remember that inferno on our TV screens at news-time, especially as it happened not very long after that terrible aviation accident at "Los Rodeos" Airport, Tenerife, Canary Islands, when two planes collided on the ground - and remains to this day the worst aviation disaster in history. Anybody want to make a film about that, too? Or do we need films about the attacks on the World Trade Center, New York, or on the public transit systems in Madrid and London?
I sincerely hope not: dramatised little stories trashed up and served for sensationalist tremendist appetites is more than somewhat unsavoury. This TV film is fairly well made in certain aspects, and rather weak in others. Acting and interpretation is too stereotyped into classical TV formulas, despite it being a German production (very many of the victims were indeed German people).
However, the scene-setting was more or less right, with just a few big faults. Firstly, there are only dead and injured bodies lying around in specific scenes, but not any can be seen in the more general shots of the camp-site burning hell. Secondly, the well-chosen vehicles of 30 years ago were using number plates which could only have appeared years later than this terrible tragedy.
It should be obvious that I do not like anything or anybody capitalising on true-story human tragedies.
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