6.8/10
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The small, everyday stories of a group of neighbours who live in a suburb of Barcelona, and the little secrets that they hide.
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ángel de Andrés López ... Lolo
María Galiana ... Conchi
Elvira Mínguez ... Raquel
Rubén Ochandiano ... César
Alberto de Mendoza ... Mariano
Darío Paso Darío Paso ... Opo
Alberto Jo Lee Alberto Jo Lee ... Mao
Amparo Moreno ... Rosalía
Blanca Apilánez Blanca Apilánez ... Carmen
Anna Barrachina Anna Barrachina ... Águeda
Pilar Arcas Pilar Arcas ... Luz
Ma-Anne Valmeo Ma-Anne Valmeo ... Joven China
Antonio Willy Calderón Antonio Willy Calderón ... Médico
Luis Elías Gómez Luis Elías Gómez ... Cura
Javier Merino Sánchez Javier Merino Sánchez ... Pescadero (as Javier Merino Sanchez)
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Storyline

The small, everyday stories of a group of neighbours who live in a suburb of Barcelona, and the little secrets that they hide.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Spain | Argentina | Mexico

Language:

Spanish

Release Date:

13 May 2005 (Spain) See more »

Also Known As:

Tapas Bar See more »

Filming Locations:

Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$503,796 (Spain), 20 May 2005
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Most of the film locations are around the Santa Eulalia neighborhood in the city of Hospitalet de Llobregat, which is the neighborhood where director José Corbacho grow up. See more »

Goofs

In the last scenes, Mao shows a tattoo on his chest and talks about it with almost religious fervor, so he has the tattoo from some time ago. However, Mao was previously seen naked to the waist (while he was training) and he had no tattoo on his chest. See more »

Connections

References Casa de los babys (2003) See more »

Soundtracks

Ya no me acuerdo
Written by José Muñoz (as José Manuel Muñoz Calvo) and David Muñoz (as David Muñoz Calvo)
Performed by Estopa
See more »

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User Reviews

Tapas, various stories from Barcelona
9 January 2007 | by Camera-ObscuraSee all my reviews

This pleasant collage by first-time directors José Corbacho and Juan Cruz is made up of three loosely interwoven stories of various people in a Barcelona neighbourhood, with a tapas bar as the central location, where most characters' lives intertwine. The title not only refers to those small appetizers Spain is famous for, but also to the Spanish verb "tapar" which means to cover up, or to hide.

I found the story of Lolo, the bar owner, the most engaging. His wife abandoned him, he is full of prejudice against women and foreigners, cannot show his emotions and has developed a deeply rooted incapability of engaging in any meaningful relationships. He needs a new chef and ends up with Mao, a Chinese immigrant who's kungfu-ing all the time but is the most efficient cook he ever had and suddenly people are flocking to his bar because his dishes are actually really good now. Some of the insights springing from this story are a bit contrived. Lolo who's learning that not all Chinese are communists or illiterate paupers seems like 40 years too late to me, but somehow the actors and the low-key filming make even obnoxious Lolo seem sympathetic and near the end of the film, I really rooted for this man.

Rubén Ochandiano gives an exceptional performance as Ruben, a teen supermarket worker who engages in a sexual relationship with middle-aged shop owner Raquel (Elvira Menquez). A very talented young actor, a natural screen presence. I hope it ensues in more prominent roles in the foreseeable future.

It's all low-key and unpretentious, with sober direction and cinematography, but surprisingly effective. Many of its characters could easily have befallen victim to stereotypes but the cast does an amazing job to give this a real breath of fresh air. Hard to resist.

Camera Obscura --- 8/10


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