24 user 19 critic

The Red Squirrel (1993)

La ardilla roja (original title)
Jota is about to commit suicide. As he fighting against himself, trying to jump off a bridge, a girl riding a motorcycle falls off the bridge. He runs to help her, and goes with her to the ... See full summary »


Julio Medem


Julio Medem
12 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Emma Suárez ... Lisa
Nancho Novo ... Jota
María Barranco ... Carmen
Karra Elejalde ... Antón
Carmelo Gómez ... Félix
Cristina Marcos ... Chica pelo azul
Mónica Molina Mónica Molina ... Chica pelo rojo
Ana Gracia Ana Gracia ... Dra. Psiquiatra
Elena Irureta Elena Irureta ... Begoña
Susana García Díez Susana García Díez ... Eli (as Susana García)
Ane Sánchez Ane Sánchez ... Cristina
Eneko Irizar Eneko Irizar ... Alberto
Sarai Noceda Sarai Noceda ... Ana
Maite Yerro Maite Yerro ... Nicola
Txema Blasco ... Jefe Neorologia


Jota is about to commit suicide. As he fighting against himself, trying to jump off a bridge, a girl riding a motorcycle falls off the bridge. He runs to help her, and goes with her to the hospital. She has forgotten even what her name is, and he invents her life. He makes up a name for her and tells her and the doctors that they live together as a couple for four years. The lie goes on for a while... Written by <oscar.esteban@p4.virtual.encomix.com>

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Did You Know?


Stanley Kubrick was such a fan of the film, he purchased Julio Medem's own personal print. See more »


Félix: I love her from my very entrails. I need her same as I need my liver, my brain, my eyes. Without her, my bones break, my lungs melt and I cannot breathe. I need Sofia so that I can live.
See more »


Referenced in Brows Held High: Room in Rome (2013) See more »


Performed by Txetxo Bengoetxea
Lyrics by Julio Medem
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User Reviews

Strange story about a peculiar love story between a girl who suffers amnesia and her saviour
9 January 2014 | by ma-cortesSee all my reviews

Intense as well as offbeat/intriguing drama with top-notch acting , superb photography and sensitive soundtrack . This brooding picture contains a magnificent performance by a beautiful woman , Emma Suarez , and a good support cast full of prestigious players giving right performances . It deals with Sofia (Emma Suarez) who suffers a motorcycle accident and loses her memory . Jota (Nanco Novo) is a musician, (Susana Gimenez) affected when misses his girlfriend , as he witnesses a motorcycle accident . When he meets Sofia who suffers amnesia , he then takes advantage of the deeds and reinvents her name as Lisa and her life according to his desires . Sofia/Lisa impacts on a great scale about Jota's life . As he makes up a name for her and tells the doctors (Ana Gracia , Txema Blasco , Cheta Lera) that they live together as a couple for several years . Later on , they go to a holiday camping and become involved with a couple called Antón (Karra Elejalde), a cabman , Carmen (María Barranco) and their children . After that , there appears a strange character named Felix (Carmelo Gómez) related to her .

Spanish production with fine acting , colorful cinematography , excellently interpreted and rousing score by Alberto Iglesias . Julio Medem directed the film for Sogetel and producer Enrique López Lavigne and it was released in 1993 . Set in San Sebastian or Donostia and at a lagoon in Pelayos De Presa , this interesting and thought-provoking film dealing with a story of solitary people , as a strange , unsettling young , well played by Nancho Novo , desperate after separating from his girlfriend , as well as a twenty-five-years-old girl riding a motorcycle and falling off a bridge , subsequently suffering amnesia , being splendidly performed by Emma Suarez . The picture was considered by the prestigious ¨Daily Telegraph¨ : as taut and intricate as anything by Alfred Hitchcock . This is a thrilling , exciting , deliberate though magnetic drama . It contains marvelous photography , breathtaking musical score and enjoyable production design . It is a riveting film though sometimes a little boring , slow-pace and overlong . Anyway, the film is interesting , thematically intriguing and strange ; Medem has his own style of telling a story . Very good support cast such as Maria Barranco , Chete Lera , Cristina Marcos ,Txema Blasco , Ana Gracia , Monica Molina and Karra Elejalde , Julio Medem's ordinary . Thrilling as well as sensitive musical score mirroring well the scenery, its people and the story line, it was superbly composed by several times Oscar nominated Alberto Iglesias , Julio Medem's usual . In addition , a spotless pictorial cinematography by Gonzalo Fernandez and a willingness , almost perfect of the elements of each shot , every sequence , every space ; being rightly filmed on location in Pelayos De la Presa, El Pardo , San Martín Valdeiglesias, Madrid, Usanos, Guadalajara and San Sebastián, Guipúzcoa, País Vasco .

The motion picture was well produced by Fernado Garcillan and originally directed by Julio Medem ; this his second movie, "Ardilla Roja" or ¨The red squirrel¨ released in 1993, was selected for the Cannes Film Festival and it confirmed Medem's talents and won prizes in Fort Lauderdale, Bogota and Bucarest . Medem had been making short movies with a super-8 camera owned by his father until he received a call from a new production company called Sogetel and executive producers Fernando de Garcillán , José Luis Olaizola , Enrique López Lavigne . They were interested in his script titled "Vacas" . It won the Goya Award from the Spanish academy for best new director, and won prizes in the festivals of Tokyo, Torino and Alexandria. In 1998 Medem released " The lovers of the Polar Circle ," considered his best movie by most of his fans . It also became a box-office hit with more than one million spectators in Spain and was also released worldwide. In 2001 his fourth movie, "Lucia and sex ," became a huge hit and began the career of actress Paz Vega who won the Goya for best new actress . Although in 2003 failed with the release , "The Basque ball" , a documentary that portrays the phenomenon of nationalism and terrorism in the Basque Country of northern Spain , it was very polemical and partial . In 2007 directed the flop ¨Caotica Ana¨ and in 2010 , ¨Room in Rome¨, a successful though with not sense film , plenty of nudism and only starred by two gorgeous naked girls . Julio Medem is for sure one of the the most important and original Spanish filmmaker. Well worth watching if you get the chance .

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Spanish | German

Release Date:

16 February 1994 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

The Red Squirrel See more »

Filming Locations:

El Pardo, Madrid, Spain See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Ultra Stereo



Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »

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