Miami International Film Festival Hosts Recent Cinema From Spain Fest
Tonight through Sunday, the Gusman Center's Olympia Theater will host red-carpet events, hold question-and-answer sessions with the actors and filmmakers, and screen seven new flicks from Spain. Among them are the Goya Award-winning Black Bread and the Western "sequel" Blackthorn.
Black Bread (Pa Negre):
Things kick off opening night with Agustí Villaronga's Goya Award winner and Spain's official submission to the 2012 Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film. Set in a Catalan countryside in 1944, the action unfolds when a mysterious hooded stranger murders a man and his son and then throws their horse-drawn carriage over a cliff with the horse still attached (our hooded friend is nothing if not thorough). Ten-year-old Andreu stumbles upon the bodies in the woods. His father, a supporter of Generalissimo Francisco Franco, is unjustly fingered as the culprit.
While his father is on the lam, Andreu is sent to live with relatives, when he befriends Nuria, a girl who lost her hand in a grenade explosion, and a boy he meets in the woods who believes he has angel's wings. Andreu finds escape with his new friends while discovering some dark family secrets along the way. With tinges of the supernatural intertwined with the tried-and-true wartime-movie formula of a kid coming of age during armed conflict (think Pan's Labyrinth meets Empire of the Sun), Black Bread is a gripping film told with rich acting and textured cinematography.
See it 7:30 p.m. Thursday;in Catalan with English subtitles. Tickets include a gift bag, a welcome cocktail, and a Q&A session with producer Isona Passola.
Blackthorn (Sin Destino):
If you've ever found yourself saying, "Hmm, I wonder if Butch survived that," after the iconic climax of the 1969 Paul Newman/Robert Redford Western classic Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, this is the film for you. Director Mateo Gil's highly anticipated Blackthorn supposes that Butch survived the Bolivian army ambush, has grown old living in exile, and is looking to return home after all these years. Sam Shepard puts on an understated and beguiling performance stepping into some insanely huge boots as Newman's aged Butch Cassidy.
Traversing through the Bolivian wilderness on his way back home, Butch (who now goes by the name James Blackthorn) is inadvertently thrust into one last go-round when he encounters a young Sundance Kid-like robber named Eduardo, who happens to be on the run from a posse. Those posses -- always getting in the way of Butch's plans! All the while, a man who chased Butch into Bolivia 20 years ago has discovered that the old gunslinger is still alive.
See it 6:45 p.m. Saturday; English and Spanish. Tickets include a Q&A with the director.
The festival will also feature the following films:
- Cousinhood (Primos) is a story about one man's harrowing journey to rekindle the relationship with the woman who left him at the altar, only to discover a little surprise that complicates matters. 9:45 p.m. Friday, October 21; Spanish with English subtitles.
- Pedro Armendáriz's heartbreaking Don't Be Afraid (No Tengas Miedo) examines the long-term psychological effects on abused children. 6:45 Friday, October 21; Spanish with English subtitles.
- In Pau Freixas's Stand by Me-like Forever Young (Héroes), a man reminisces about his childhood in the '80s. 4 p.m. Saturday, October 22.
- Three Meters Above the Sky (Tres Metros Sobre el Cielo) is a charming Romeo and Juliet-inspired romantic comedy about an upper-middle-class girl who falls for a rebellious, motorcycle-riding boy. 9:45 p.m. Saturday, October 22; Spanish with English subtitles.
- The festival will close with the revenge thriller Five Square Meters (Cinco Metros Cuadrados). 7:30 p.m. Sunday, October 23; Spanish with English subtitles.
Brought to you by the Miami International Film Festival.
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