Directors and stars gathered in Madrid for the presentation. :: SUR
The official presentation of the XVII Malaga Festival of Spanish Film, which will be held from 21st to 29th March, took place in Madrid last week, and the organisers were keen to stress that despite the economic crisis many films are still being made in Spain, even though their budgets may be more limited. In fact, this year there will be more films in the official section of the competition - 16 in total - because it begins on a Friday instead of on a Saturday. The selection this year is very varied, “ranging from the most industrial films to the most artisan”, as Fernando Méndez-Leite, a member of the selection committee, explained.
Juan Antonio Vígar, the director of the Malaga Festival, said that the committee had made its selection from 109 films that had been presented for the competition, and that the ones that had been chosen were “a balance between the most conventional and the most personal type of cinema; between experienced film-makers and those with a contemporary point of view”.
If evidence were needed of the health of the film industry during the crisis, it can be seen from the fact that the Festival will include some large-budget entries such as ‘No llores, vuela’, which is directed by Claudia Llosa, and ‘Una noche en el viejo México’, by Emilio Aragón. The former, which stars Jennifer Connelly and Cillian Murphy, will be the first to be shown, while the latter, starring Robert Duvall, will bring the Festival to a close. Other entries include the thriller ‘Kamikaze’ by newcomer Álex Pina; ‘La vida inesperada’, a comedy filmed in New York by Jorge Torregrossa, featuring Javier Cámara and Raúl Arévalo, and the romantic drama ‘Por un puñado de besos’, from veretan film-maker David Menkes.
Paco León will also be returning to the Malaga Festival of Spanish Film this year with his keenly awaited sequel to ‘Carmina o revienta’, with which he made his surprise debut as a director two years ago. The actor and film-maker says he is delighted to be taking part in the competition in Malaga again because it is “The ‘Champions League’ of Spanish cinema”. His entry is called ‘Carmina y amén’, which he describes as being more complex than its predecessor, but which he promises “will not disappoint”.
Surprises in store
Other films to look out for this year are ‘10,000 km’, by Carlos Marqués-Marcet, which is expected to do well; ‘Anochece en la India’, the road movie from Chema Rodríguez, ‘A escondidas’, by Mikel Rueda and local film-maker Enrique García’s, ‘321 días en Míchigan’ which aims to show a different and more realistic view of life in prison.
The Festival opens on Friday.