Sunday, November 24, 2013

Imanol Uribe: El viaje de Carol / Carol's Journey (2002)

Imanol Uribe's El viaje de Carol / Carol's Journey (2002), based on Ángel García Roldán's 1988 novel A boca ne noche, takes us to 1938 Spain and the last full year of the Spanish Civil War via its protagonist, Carol (Clara Lago). Carol's mother has returned to her Spanish home from New York City to die bringing her in tow, while her father, an American anti-fascist volunteer fighting in the war, is separated from them both by the war zone. Carol's Journey, filmed in the area of Cantabria in the north of Spain and partly in Portugal, features lush green trees and fields, hills and mountains and hoary, well-maintained architecture. The tone is gentle and compassionate. However, the situation is actually quite grave, an eerie calm before full frontal fascism sweeps into town. Already, most of the local powers that be are pro-Franco, a threat, therefore, to Carol and her "free thinking" grandfather, Don Amilio (Álvaro de Luna), and other locals.      
Carol's befriends Tomiche, one of the town scamps (Juan José Ballesta), whose father has been executed by pro-Franco falangists. Tomiche is one of the most pitiful boys you can imagine this side of Charles Dickens, a true waif. Luckily, they have other friends as well. The war's end looms bigger than all of them, though. A beautiful indie style film -- "a little gem," as a blurb on the DVD cover observes. 

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Charles Gramlich said...

Dickens did some waifs for sure.

t said...

Wish I could watch this