5.1/10
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La Celestina (1996)

The young nobleman Calisto falls in love with Melibea, the daughter of a rich merchant. Calisto's servant Sempronio suggests they get the sorceress Celestina to further the romance. However... See full summary »

Director:

Gerardo Vera

Writers:

Fernando de Rojas (novel), Rafael Azcona (adaptation) | 3 more credits »
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5 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Penélope Cruz ... Melibea (as Penelope Cruz)
Terele Pávez ... Celestina (as Terele Pavez)
Juan Diego Botto ... Calisto
Maribel Verdú ... Areusa (as Maribel Verdu)
Jordi Mollà ... Pármeno (as Jordi Molla)
Nancho Novo ... Sempronio
Nathalie Seseña ... Lucrecia
Carlos Fuentes Carlos Fuentes ... Sosia
Candela Peña ... Elicia
Anna Lizaran ... Alisa (as Ana Lizaran)
Sergio Villanueva ... Tristán
Ángel de Andrés López ... Centurio (as Angel de Andres Lopez)
Lluís Homar ... Pleberio (as Lluis Homar)
Ana Risueño Ana Risueño ... Poncia
Rodrigo García Rodrigo García ... Crito (as Rodrigo Garcia)
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Storyline

The young nobleman Calisto falls in love with Melibea, the daughter of a rich merchant. Calisto's servant Sempronio suggests they get the sorceress Celestina to further the romance. However Calisto's other servant Parmeno is suspicious of Celestina, as he knows about her tricks. After Celestina convinces Melibea of Calisto's love and arranges a brief clandestine meeting between them, Calisto gives Celestina a valuable chain of gold. Both servants are not satisfied with the whores supplied by Celestina and demand more from her, thus setting off a dramatic sequence of events. Written by Will Gilbert

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Spain

Language:

Spanish

Release Date:

8 November 1996 (Spain) See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

ESP250,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Carmen Maura was the first choice for the title role of Celestina See more »

Connections

Version of The Wanton of Spain (1969) See more »

Soundtracks

Fantasies pavanes & gallardes: Gallarda 6 y Fantasía 1
By Lluís del Milà
Version of Jordi Savall
Performed by Jordi Savall, Andrew Lawrence King (as A. Lawrence-King), Sergi Casademunt (as S. Casademunt),
E. Brandao, L. Duftschmid
Permission by Audivis
See more »

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User Reviews

 
An Attempt to Recreate the Magic of LA CELESTINA
1 November 2006 | by gradyharpSee all my reviews

LA CELESTINA was written in 1499 by Fernando de Rojas and is considered to be second only to Cervantes' DON QUIXOTE as the greatest work of Spanish literature. Here the novel is adapted for the screen by Rafael Azcona, Francisco Rico, and Gerardo Vera, the last contributor serving as director of this sadly uneven film. Despite boasting a cast of some of the finest actors in Spain, the dialogue is such a mishmash of old rhythms and contemporary expressions that much of the magic is lost.

But then the story is a bit on the 15th century wild side: a handsome young knight Calisto (Juan Diego Botto) is obsessively in love with the beautiful Melibea (Penélope Cruz) yet it takes the love potions of the bruja Celestina (Terele Pávez), enlisted by Calisto's conniving servant Sempronio (Nancho Novo), to effect the magic. Calisto's faithful and humble servant Pármeno (Jordi Mollà) fails in his attempts to block the spells delivered by Celestina but to no avail. Once the magic is in effect the worlds of each person fall apart. The human passions of love, greed, lust, revenge, and desire interplay in a manner that brings destruction in the path.

Made in 1996 before many of the actors involved became famous, the film 'looks' magical with radiant costumes and sets and spot on music. But the dialogue is clumsy, the English translations even clumsier, and the whole story fails to work its spell on the audience. Instead of a fiery climax the film just sort of fizzles. But it is interesting to see Penélope Cruz, Juan Diego Botto, Maribel Verdú, Jordi Mollà and Nancho Novo in their early stage of development. This is an escapist period piece that could have been so much better, but even in this state it is entertaining. Grady Harp


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