8 user 13 critic

Placido (1961)

Plácido (original title)
In a small spanish town, a group of old ladies decide to celebrate Christmas Eve with a "Sit a poor man at your table" dinner: each wealthy household of the town will have a homeless person... See full summary »


Luis García Berlanga (as Luis G. Berlanga)


Luis García Berlanga (story) (as Luis G. Berlanga), Rafael Azcona (story) | 4 more credits »
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 7 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Cassen ... Plácido Alonso (as Casto Sendra 'Cassen')
José Luis López Vázquez ... Gabino Quintanilla
Elvira Quintillá ... Emilia
Manuel Alexandre ... Julián Alonso
Mario de Bustos Mario de Bustos ... Don Rodolfo
María Francés ... Hermana de la Caridad
Mari Carmen Yepes Mari Carmen Yepes ... Martita (as Carmen Yepes)
Jesús Puche Jesús Puche ... Jefe de estación
Roberto Llamas Roberto Llamas ... Damián Olmedo
Amelia de la Torre ... Doña Encarna de Galán
Juan G. Medina Juan G. Medina ... Don Arturo
José María Caffarel ... Zapater (as José Mª Caffarel)
Xan das Bolas ... Rivas
Fernando Delgado ... Representante
Laura Granados ... Erika


In a small spanish town, a group of old ladies decide to celebrate Christmas Eve with a "Sit a poor man at your table" dinner: each wealthy household of the town will have a homeless person dining with them that night. The celebrations also include a parade, and in it we find Plácido, the humble owner of a three-wheeler, whose family is forced to live in a public lavatory because of the lack of money to pay the rent, and who has to pay the second bill of his vehicle before midnight or else he will lose it. Written by Pablo Montoya

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Drama


See all certifications »

Did You Know?


The film was originally going to be titled "Siente a un pobre a su mesa" ("seat a poor man at your table"), but this was ultimately changed because the Spanish censorship would not allow it. See more »


Featured in Berlanga, plano personal (2011) See more »

User Reviews

an interminably garrulous talkie
25 October 2016 | by lasttimeisawSee all my reviews

Venerable Spanish director Luis García Berlanga's hyperbolically frenetic social satire PLACIDO is an Oscar nominee for BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM and Palme d'or contestant, and guilefully circumvents the censor of Franco's government by subsuming his trenchant sideswipes into the pandemonium of a farcical dynamo.

The story takes place exclusively on the day before Christmas, in a small Spanish town, to celebrate the festival, each of the wealthy families will invite one poor citizen to each one's Christmas Eve dinner, to be a Good Samaritan for one day, (but even that, would be too big a challenge for many of them, Berlanga makes sure that the acerbic irony doesn't lose itself in the swamp of shameless plugging) . And Placido (comedian Cassen in his film debut) is an unassuming man who must pay his bill before midnight, otherwise he will lose his motor-vehicle (and his family stays in the public lavatory because they cannot afford the rent). He is hired by Gabino Quintanilla (Vázquez, a masterful nexus in the convoluted morass), the photographer of the so-called "set a poor man at your table" charity event, to participate the Christmas parade in the afternoon with his vehicle, after he picks up a band of film stars in the train stations, who will participate in the charity auction afterwards.

Rambunctious from A to Z, this comedy distinguishes itself as an interminably garrulous talkie, which sets a built-in hindrance to those subtitle-dependent first-time viewers, it could be an excruciatingly daunting experience since the devil is in the details, and it is plain physically impossible to get on board with all comings and goings at that speed. The charity plugging continues with an effervescent flurry of episodes where bourgeois hypocrisy, nagging nuisances, contemptible unkindness inexorably career through the night with Placido persistently tailing behind to make both ends meet.

A plethora of named Spanish actors appears on the roster to enliven the burlesque merry-go- round, which predominantly caters for its home-turf demography who can trace a piquant whiff of self-referentiality out of its rowdy mockery, and also accentuates Berlanga's rhythmic legerdemain to affix a catenation of skits scene to scene in a non-stop fashion, however, in the eyes of an outsider, its efficacy is potently eclipsed by his tangibly more mordant social critique THE EXECUTIONER (1963).

1 of 2 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 8 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.






Release Date:

27 June 1962 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Placido See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Jet Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page

We've Got Your Streaming Picks Covered

Looking for some great streaming picks? Check out some of the IMDb editors' favorites movies and shows to round out your Watchlist.

Visit our What to Watch page

Recently Viewed