21 user 13 critic

The Grandfather (1998)

El abuelo (original title)
PG | | Drama | 30 October 1998 (Spain)
0:37 | Trailer
After his son dies, an elderly man comes back to Spain from the US and hopes to find out which of his granddaughters is true, and which one is bastard.


José Luis Garci
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 9 wins & 17 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Fernando Fernán Gómez ... Don Rodrigo de Arista Potestad
Rafael Alonso ... Don Pío Coronado
Cayetana Guillén Cuervo ... Doña Lucrecia Richmond
Agustín González ... Senén Corchado
Cristina Cruz Cristina Cruz ... Dolly
Alicia Rozas Alicia Rozas ... Nelly
Fernando Guillén ... Alcalde de Jerusa
Francisco Piquer ... Prior de Zaratay
María Massip María Massip ... Gregoria
José Caride José Caride ... Venancio
Francisco Algora ... Don Carmelo
Emma Cohen ... Vicenta, la alcaldesa
Juan Calot ... Don Salvador, médico
Concha Gómez Conde Concha Gómez Conde ... Doña Consuelito
Nuria Rodríguez Nuria Rodríguez ... Criada


An elderly man returns to Spain after spent some time in Peru looking for gold mines and losing his fortune. He returns because his son has died leaving two daughters, and the son has left a note stating that one of the two is a bastard child. The grandfather hopes to find out which is his true granddaughter. Written by <Bondelev@usc.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for thematic elements and language | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


Rafael Alonso died before he complete dubbing of his character, dubbing actor Félix Acaso did his voice. See more »


Don Rodrigo de Arista Potestad: Villainy is forgivable. Ingratitude, never.
See more »


Featured in The 71st Annual Academy Awards (1999) See more »


By Erik Satie
Arranged by Manuel Balboa
Performed by Orquesta Sinfónica de Madrid
Conducted by Ángel Gil Ordóñez
Piano soloist: Liliam María Castillo (as Lilian Castillo)
See more »

User Reviews

Sensational rendition with extraordinary performances and luxurious scenarios
28 December 2009 | by ma-cortesSee all my reviews

This perceptible drama is based on Benito Perez Galdos's (author of Episodios Nacionales) novel and adapted by Horacio Valcarcel. The countess Lucrecia (Cayetana Guillen Cuervo) along with his two daughters(Alicia Rozas, Cristina Cruz) return to City of Jerusia. But also the grandfather (Fernando Fernan Gomez)goes back Spain after traveling America looking for the Dorado, but he is now ruined. The old man wants reckoning , because his son died and left a will stating which one of the two daughters is an illegitimate little girl . Later on, the elderly count is obligated by the Mayor(Fernando Guillen, Cayetana Guillen's father), the priest(Francisco Algora), the administrator(Agustin Gonzalez) and doctor(Juan Calot) to remain at a Monastery led by the prior(Francisco Piquer) but Don Rodrigo escapes.

This is a thought-provoking drama filmed with great sensitivity and feeling. It's an intelligent and touching story although sometimes is slow moving and tiring but is finely developed with sense of style and sensibility. In the picture are treated ethics and morals themes developed with great sense of fairness and ductility.Excellent acting by Fernando Fernan Gomez as an embittered man who will must face the traumatic truth and choose between honor and love. Special mention to Rafael Alonso as unfortunate elderly man who is mistreated by his six daughters . Besides exceptional and awesome cinematography by Raul Perez Cubero as is reflected on the marvelous outdoors of the countryside and brilliant interiors . Wonderful musical score by Manuel Balboa and the symphonic orchestra of Madrid with haunting leitmotif. Well filmed on marvelous locations as Niembro, Llanes, Pola De Lena, Church of Valdedios and Santa Cristina Lena (Asturias) and Monastery of Santa Maria Vid (Aranda Duero). Spectacular production design by Gil Parrondo who formerly achieved two Oscars (Patton, Nicholas and Alexandra). The motion picture is accurately directed by Jose Luis Garci (El Crack I, II, Luz Domingo) who won one Academy Award for ¨Volver a Empezar¨. Rating : Better than average and well worth seeing.

For these reasons is essential and indispensable watching and is better than first version titled ¨La Duda¨ by Rafael Gil with Fernando Rey (Fernando Fernan Gomez role), Analia Gade (Cayetana Guillen character),Pilar Bardem, and again Rafael Alonso as Senen Corbacho (Agustin Gonzalez role).

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Release Date:

30 October 1998 (Spain) See more »

Also Known As:

The Grandfather See more »


Box Office


ESP400,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$12,726, 10 October 1999

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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