Buñuel in the Labyrinth of the Turtles

La Película presents contemporary Spanish-language cinema in Prague

Spanish-language dramas and documentaries will be at Prague’s Světozor cinema

The festival La Película runs February 18–23 at Prague’s Světozor cinema, and will present films from Spain and countries where Spanish is a predominant language. Many but not all of the films will have English subtitles in addition to Czech.

The festival opens with the psychological drama The Mother (Matka / Madre) directed by Rodrigo Sorogoyen. The director and actress Marta Nieto will personally present the film about a mother who meets a young man who resembles her long-missing son. It is in Spanish and French with Czech and Spanish subtitles.

Films that do have English subtitles include dramas, documentaries, and animation,

The animated feature Buñuel in the Labyrinth of the Turtles (Buñuel v želvím labyrintu / Buñuel en el laberinto de las tortugas) is based on a graphic novel about the famed Spanish director. It is set in 1933, when Buñuel was down on his luck. A winning lottery ticket allows him to make a short film about impoverished villages.

Online chat between a married woman approaching 50 and much younger is the subject of Double Plus Fifteen (Dvakrát tolik a patnáct navrch / El doble más quince). They meet in person, and start an unconventional friendship.

The crime thriller 70 Big Ones (70 binládinů / 70 binladens) finds a desperate women about to rob a bank, when two more bank robbers show up by chance and risk spoiling her plan. The title refers to slang for a 500 euro note, which has been popular among criminal groups.

A Chilean film inspired by a poem by Cesar Pavese, Death Will Come and Shall Have Your Eyes (Přijde smrt a bude mít tvé oči / Vendrá la muerte y tendrá tus ojos) finds two women how have spent their lives together having to deal with one of them having a fatal illness.

The lives of Roma in a port city are examined in blend of documentary and drama in Between Two Waters (Mezi dvěma vodami / Entre dos aguas). Director Isaki Lacuesta returned to the town off San Fernando, where 12 years ago he documented two Roma kids whose father had recently died.

A jobless rapper living in Madrid with his parents and his children is the focus of the documentary Niñato (Velké dítě). Adrián Orr’s first feature, using some of the same people seen in his 2013 short film, creates a social portrait of an extended family.

Partly in English with Czech and Spanish subtitles, the documentary Letters to Paul Morrisey (Dopisy pro Paula Morrisseye) has cinematic letters from several people including superstar Joe Dallessandro. They reflect on Paul Morrisey, the film director who worked with Andy Warhol and managed the Velvet Underground.

Notable films with just Czech subtitles include Tremors (Chvění / Temblores), a Guatemalan co-production about a father coming out as gay in strict religious family, the absurd comedy Advantages of Travelling by Train (Výhody cestování vlakem / Ventajas de viajar en tren), and Pedro Almodovar’s Pain and Glory (Bolest a sláva / Dolor y gloria), with Antonio Banderas as an aging filmmaker.

The festival is organized by the Embassy of Spain in Prague, Instituto Cervantes and kino Světozor. The complete program is available on the festival website. Tickets are already on sale.

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