1937, Spain is in the midst of the brutal Spanish Civil War. A "Happy" circus clown is interrupted mid-performance and forcibly recruited by a militia. Still in his costume, he is handed a machete and led into battle against National soldiers, where he single handedly massacres an entire platoon. Fast forward to 1973, the tail end of the Franco regime. Javier, the son of the clown, dreams of following in his father's career footsteps, but has seen too much tragedy in his life-he's simply not funny and is only equipped to play the role of the Sad Clown. He finds work in a circus where he befriends an outlandish cast of characters, but as the Sad Clown he must take the abuse of the brutish Happy Clown Sergio, who humiliates Javier daily in the name of entertainment. It is here that he meets Natalia, a gorgeous acrobat, and abused wife of Sergio. Javier falls deeply in love with Natalia and tries to rescue her from her cruel and violent husband, unleashing Sergio's jealousy. But Natalia ...Written by
According with Álex de la Iglesia, Raphael watched the movie before the public premieres, and he didn't like voice acting of the actor who played him. De la Iglesia offered him to dub himself, and finally is Raphael's voice which is heard in the movie. See more »
When Andres is arrested, he says "maderos" to the policemen, but this word was not yet used at this time. He shoould have said "grises" (grey) because this is the color of the police uniform - only years later would it become brown. ("Madero" is log or piece of wood, which is why people called policemen "maderos"). See more »
To watch this movie and enjoy it one must suspend all judgment.
It doesn't pretend to show us scenes of everyday living, or the girl next door shopping at the supermarket.
It deals with the same magic world that García Márquez deals with in his exotic novels. Marvellously created world. As thrilling as any Fellini movie. The circus world is the perfect setting for developing this view, between fantasy, nightmares and awful reality.
The pacing is relentless, a thousand things happening during the 120 minutes or so, all of them linked within the main story and showing a whole range of human emotions among the three main characters: The Smiling Clown, The Sad Clown (his sidekick) and the beautiful trapeze girl, the object of jealousy, fury, rancor between the two clowns.
Every scene is visually baroque in essence, since action takes place in the foreground but also in the background, with secondary characters.
There is a full color palette, dazzling as an old kaleidoscope making all sorts of beautiful patterns that change in front of our eyes delighting us continuously.
The acting is superb, from the principal actors to the last extra. The delivery of the lines in Spanish is done at full speed, clean as a whistle and sharp as a cracking whip by all the actors.
The digital effects perfect. Top entertainment from beginning to end. What a SEN-SA-TION-AL movie!!!
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