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Cinema Club > 2017 Autumn (Season 12)
Cine Club: Wednesday 15 November 2017
(Doors open at 6:15 - Event from 7:00 to 8:15 pm)

Title: The Spirit of the Beehive
Duration: 1 hour and 35 min
Language: Spanish (English Subtitles)
Director: Victor Erice (Spain)
Year of Release: 1973
Stars: Fernando Fernán Gómez, Teresa Gimpera, Ana Torrent
 

Synopsis (Adapted from www.fandango.com by Yuri German. Click Here)
Widely regarded as a masterpiece of Spanish cinema, this allegorical tale is set in a remote village in the 1940s. The life in the village is calm and uneventful. This is an allegory of Spanish life after General Franco's victory in the Spanish Civil War. While their father studies bees in his beehive and their mother writes letters to a non-existent correspondent, two young girls, Ana and Isabel, go to see James Whale's Frankenstein at a local cinema. Though they can hardly understand the concept, both girls are deeply impressed with the moment when a little girl gives a flower to the monster. Isabel, the older sister, tells Ana that the monster actually exists as a spirit that you can't see unless you know how to approach him. Ana starts wandering around the countryside in search of the kind creature. The film received critical accolades for its subtle and masterful use of cinematic language and the expressive performance of the young Ana Torrent.

Click Here for a YouTube Trailer
Click Here for an article by Roger Ebert
Click Here for an article in the Guardian
Click Here for an article in the Criterion Collection
Click Here for an article in the New York State Writers Institute


Victor Erice (for a full article on Erice, Click Here.
Another, Click Here.
He studied law, political science, and economics at the University of Madrid. He also attended the Escuela Oficial de Cinematografia in 1963 to study film direction. He wrote film criticism and reviews for the Spanish film journal Nuestro Cine, and made a series of short films before making his first feature film, The Spirit of the Beehive (1973), a critical portrait of 1940s rural Spain that many regard as one of the greatest Spanish films ever made.
Ten years later, Erice wrote and directed El Sur (1983), based on a story from Adelaida García Morales, considered a masterpiece although the producer Elías Querejeta only allowed him to film the first two-thirds of the story. His third movie, The Quince Tree Sun (1992) is a documentary about painter Antonio López García. The film won the Jury Prize and the FIPRESCI Prize at the 1992 Cannes Film Festival.
He was a member of the jury at the 2010 Cannes Film Festival in May.

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