‘Tu hijo’, by Miguel Ángel Vivas, to kick-off the 63rd edition of Seminci

The Official Section will screen in competition Nicolás Pacheco’s first film ‘Jaulas’and Gastón Duprat’s Argentine-Spanish film My Masterpiece

Time of History will host the premiere of Almudena Carracedo’s The Silence of Others as well as documentary features by Arantxa Aguirre, Alba Sotorra, and José Luis López Linares and the latest film by Carlos Saura (showing out of competition)

‘Tu hijo’, by Miguel Ángel Vivas

09/12/2018.- Tu hijo, the fifth long feature by Seville-born filmmaker  Miguel Ángel Vivas, will open the 63rd edition of the Valladolid International Film Festival on 20 Oct., 2018. The festival will showcase an important representation of Spanish films in all its sections. Together with the kick-off screening, Valladolid’s Official Section will feature Jaulas, the first film by Nicolás Pacheco, another Sevillian filmmaker, as well as the Argentine-Spanish coproduction My Masterpiece by Gastón Duprat.

In Tu hijo, the life of MD Jaime Jiménez (Jose Coronado) falls apart when his 17-year-old son collapses into a vegetative state following a brutal beating after leaving a nightclub. When Jaime realizes that the police are not doing anything to arrest the offenders, he  embarks on his own descent into hell in order to claim revenge. The film’s cast also features Pol Monen, Ana Wagener, Asia Ortega and Ester Expósito. Tu Hijo is a French-Spanish coproduction by Apache Films, Las Películas del Apache, La Claqueta and Ran Entertainment, involving the participation of Canal Sur, Netflix and Orange and the support of ICAA and Andalusia’s Regional Government (Junta de Andalucía). 

The first feature-length by Nicolás Pacheco, Jaulas, is a social drama starring Goya-winner  Estefanía de los Santos, Belén Ponce de León and Antonio Dechent,  and featuring the acting debut of Marta Gavilán and Manuel Cañada. Additional cast members are  Manuel Tallafé, Manolo Caro, Antonio Estrada and Romanian actor  Stefan Mihai.  The movie tells the story of three women who leave the big city in an attempt to escape from a marginal environment ruled by male chauvinism and social backwardness. Produced by  Antonio Pérez and engaging a large crew of Andalusian film professionals, the film was shot in Seville and San Juan de Aznalfarache. It involves the participation of public broadcaster Canal Sur, Andalusia’s regional government and Spain’s  Institute of Cinematography and Audiovisual Arts (ICAA).

My Masterpiece, on the other hand,  is the latest film by Argentinian filmmaker Gastón Duprat, the co-director of the 61st SEMINCI’s Silver-Spike winner The Distinguished Citizen. The film’s main parts are played by  Guillermo Francella, Luis Brandoni, Andrea Frigerio  and the Spanish actor Raúl Arévalo. In  My Masterpiecea, Arturo (Guillermo Francella), the successful and good-looking owner of an art gallery, and the talented, yet declining painter Renzo (Luis Brandoni), have a sound friendly relationship despite their differing views. One day Arturo enters a partnership with Dudú (Andrea Frigerio) so as to re-launch his friend’s career. Halfway between comedy and melodrama,  My Masterpiece has been coproduced by the Mediapro Group, Arco Libre and Televisión Abierta, and screened out of competition in Venice’s Official Section last month.  

Meeting point

The 63rd Valladolid Film Festival will include one feature­length and five shorts made in Spain in Meeting Point: the festival’s parallel competitive section that showcases first and second fiction films that possess special merits in terms of their topics or cinematic style. The Spanish long feature picked out to screen in this section is Now (Ara/Ahora), by  Pere Solés, a fictional story shot with real-life clinical patients that shows the struggle of a team of psychologists specialised in eating disorders, whose single weapon is often common sense, against the meaningless ordeal suffered by girls like  Nuria, the latest anorexic patient in the clinic  who puts to the test the therapists’ professional skills.  Now  is a  DDM production.

The section will additionally host a new edition of  The Night of Spanish Short Films, including the premiere of five titles:  De repente, la noche, by  Cristina Bodelón and Ignacio de Vicente; Gusanos de seda, by  Carlos Villafaina; Kafenio Kastello, by Miguel Ángel Jiménez; Tahrib, by Gerard Vidal, and Viudas, by María Guerra. Finally, Alberto Gastesis’s short film Cáctus will be showing out of competition.  

Time of History

The documenatry section of the 63rd SEMINCI will for the first time screen five Spanish film productions (four of them in competition). More particularly, Time of History will show the latest works by Almudena Carracedo, Arantxa Aguirre, Alba Sotorra and José Luis López-Linares,  together with the most recent film by veteran film master Carlos Saura and a documentary short by debutant director Ana Catalá.

The Silence of Others is the latest work by filmmakers Almudena Carracedo and Robert Bahar: a film that unveils the  silenced struggle of the victims of Franco’s dictatorship’s as they try, even today,  to obtain justice. Some 140,000 families are currently searching for the mortal remains of relatives assassinated during the Civil War so as to give them a dignified burial. Shot in the course of six years, the documentary traces the story of the regime’s victims and that of survivors who launched the so-called Argentinian Lawsuit in an attempt to seek justice for those who “went missing” during the Francoist regime and hold those who were responsible accountable for such crimes. After decades of silence, the Spanish society learnt that  hundreds of children had been stolen or abducted both before and during the dictatorship. The film furthermore deals with torture, extrajudicial killings, mass graves and the whole of the international legal process that is taking place with regard to these facts. The Silence of Others, whose executive production has been carried out  by El Deseo, harvested the Audience Award in the Panorama Dokumente section of the 68th Berlinale. Its directorial tandem returns this year to SEMINCI, where their previous, Made In L.A. (2007) was awarded a Special Jury Mention.

Arantxa Aguirre, the winner of Time of History’s second prize during the 61st edition of the Valladolid Film Fest for Dancing Beethoven, will this year present her new documentary El amor y la muerte. Historia de Enrique Granados. In this feature-length film, Aguirre approaches the figure of Romantic piano performer and composer  Enrique Granados, who died on the same day as his opera opera Goyescas was first performed at the Metropolitan Opera in New York City.

Also in this yearTime of History, José Luis López Linares will be showing his documentary Altamira: el origen del arte, the result of his filming trip to the Altamira caves after the lifting of  a ban from the  1980s. The shooting required a special equipment of remote-control, high-resolution cameras and cold, high chromatic performance lighting aimed at preventing alterations in the cave’s natural conditions. The trip is used by the director to share his reflections about the origins of art in Altamira. López Linares already won this section’s second prize in SEMINCI’s 41st edition for Storm the Skies (1996), a film he co-directed with  Javier Rioyo.

Last but not least. Time of History will screen the coproduction  CommanderAryan. A story of Women, War and Freedom, by filmmaker Alba Sotorra (Germany/Spain/Syria), who takes her camera to the Syrian war’s frontline in order to document the struggle of Kurdish women in the north of the country against the Islamic State as well as the feminist revolution that is taking place in Kurdistan. In this she is guided by YPJ commander Arian, one of the military chiefs in charge of the female military units set up in 2012 so as to protect the Kurds from the advance of ISIS. This is a co-production involving Boekamp & Kriegsheim, TVE and TV3. 

Carlos Saura will be presenting out of competition his documentary feature-length Renzo Piano, un arquitecto para Santander (Renzo Piano, The Architect of Light), where he focuses on the professional work of Renzo Piano during the construction of the art centre overlooking the Santander Bay commissioned by the  Fundación Botín and designed by the Genoa-born architect. Produced by Álvaro Longoria (Morena Films), the film includes several interviews which Saura conducted with the Italian architect and highlights the way in which the already finished project is tightly integrated into the city’s life.  

SEMINICI’s doc film section, moreover, will also screen a short film in competition. Ana Catala’s We Were All to be Queens  is a round trip to the filmmakers childhood years that resorts to her old VHS videos. The film challenges the social and cultural structures imposed on women from an early age to as to make them conform to the sterotype of the perfect woman —all against the background of the Fallas festival in Valencia.

Too all the above titles we should add the full line-ups of habitual fest sections Spanish Cinema (a showcase of the Spanish filmic output over the last 12 months); DOC. España (a competitive section exclusively devoted to Spanish documentary films) and  Castilla y León en Largo y Castilla y León en Corto: a selection of films made by directors living or working  in Castile and Leon either shot or produced in this region. The Valladolid Festival will soon announce the titles making up these sections in the upcoming 63rd edition of SEMINCI.

Posted in 63rd Seminci.