7.9/10
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98 user 83 critic

The Spirit of the Beehive (1973)

El espíritu de la colmena (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama, Fantasy | 14 March 1975 (Sweden)
Trailer
3:40 | Trailer
In 1940, after watching and being traumatized by the movie Frankenstein (1931), a sensitive seven year-old girl living in a small Spanish village drifts into her own fantasy world.

Director:

Víctor Erice

Writers:

Ángel Fernández Santos (original screenplay), Víctor Erice (original screenplay)
7 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Photos

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Fernando Fernán Gómez ... Fernando
Teresa Gimpera ... Teresa
Ana Torrent ... Ana
Isabel Tellería Isabel Tellería ... Isabel
Ketty de la Cámara Ketty de la Cámara ... Milagros, la criada
Estanis González Estanis González ... Guardia civil
José Villasante José Villasante ... Frankenstein
Juan Margallo ... Fugitivo
Laly Soldevila Laly Soldevila ... Doña Lucía
Miguel Picazo Miguel Picazo ... Doctor
Learn more

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Storyline

In Castilla around 1940, a traveling movie theatre brings James Whale's black and white film classic "Frankenstein" (1931) to a small village. Two young girls, Isabel and Ana, are subsequently determined to find the monster themselves. Written by Michael Crew <m.crew@bbcnc.org.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Entering a child's world of fascination and horror.

Genres:

Drama | Fantasy

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film is included on Roger Ebert's "Great Movies" list. See more »

Goofs

When the fugitive jumps from the train and rolls down the hill, he's wearing boots, but in the next shot he's wearing low-cut shoes. See more »

Quotes

Isabel: Take the brush and you wash your face with it. Then put soap on it.
Ana: [lathers up her face] Then I shave off all my little hairs?
Isabel: [laughs] Yes. Then when you're done you put on cologne.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Their Golden Years (1980) See more »

Soundtracks

Ojos verdes
Written by Salvador Valverde (as Valverde), Rafael de León (as León) y Manuel L. Quiroga (as Quiroga)
See more »

User Reviews

 
graceful and elegant
7 August 2006 | by muercoSee all my reviews

Like many of the other commentators here, I had heard about this movie long before I had ever had a chance to see it, although it typically is mentioned as one of Spain's greatest films. It definitely is. It is masterfully directed and I have not been able to stop thinking about it for days.

The story is elliptically told and demands your participation in making sense of the narrative, but it's also leisurely paced and allows you to breathe in the atmosphere rather than forcing a particular reading on you. One thing you wouldn't guess from reading the other comments is how this is as much a film about nature as about history--it is like a poem of the countryside in winter, with long vistas of stone farmhouses framed against the rising sun. The film with the most similar visual palette is Malick's "Days of Heaven", but that film feels simplistic compared to the full immersion in history and memory presented in this film--a much more complete vision of the past.

Ana Torrent is unforgettable. I can think of no better film about children, yet (as with so many other things in this movie) it doesn't feel forced--these kids aren't just the director's pawns, but real, living beings.

If you get a chance to see it, definitely make the effort.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

Spain

Language:

Spanish

Release Date:

14 March 1975 (Sweden) See more »

Also Known As:

The Spirit of the Beehive See more »

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Box Office

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$131,811
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »

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