Loreak

by | Nov 9, 2015 | 0 comments

Spain’s Oscar Entry Is A Disappointing Film With An Incredibly Forced Story

 

It’s hard to make a film or simply a story seem original. However, expert writers and storytellers have said that the only way to achieve originality is to keep the story as realistic as possible. Unfortunately, it seems Loreak hasn’t heard these valuable pieces of information.

Loreak is Spain’s entry for the Foreign Film category of 2016’s Academy Awards. It is the first film submitted in Spain’s history to be entirely in Euskera, a common tongue in the northern region of Spain known as the Basque Country. The title means “flowers” in English, and this is a common theme throughout the film. The movie starts out telling the story of a woman named Ane (Nagore Aranburu) who is diagnosed with menopause. She then starts receiving flowers mysteriously from an unknown sender. The film then jumps to another story, that of Beñat (Josea Begoetxea), a construction worker and coworker of Ane’s. We see Beñat lives a quiet life with his wife Lourdes (Itziar Ituño) who doesn’t get a long at all with Beñat’s mother: Tere (Itziar Aizpuru). The stories seem different, but as the film moves along they end up converging a la Love Actually.

What was wrong with this film was that it tried too hard to be original and fresh, so that it seems incredibly forced. There is a nice theme with the flowers, but the rest is almost shoved down your throat. Unfortunately, the film also confused depression with quality. It seemed to think that the more depressive the story, the better the film, but this is simply not true; in fact it ends up making all the human interactions and overall story: odd. Then there was the pacing, which was incredibly slow, and you might think that at least we get some character development, but the differences were minimal. And on the subject of characters, they all were written to seem original as well, but instead ended up being boring and unlikeable.  

In technical terms the film was beautifully shot and the sound of the Basque drizzles were a joy to experience. The cast also held its ground against such a queer script. But in the end these aspects aren’t enough to breathe some air into the film. I was more surprised by the fact that La Isla Minima wasn’t submitted instead (known as Marshland in English). 

  • OVERALL MOVIE RATING 68% 68%

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What is your favorite Spanish movie? Let me know in the comments section.

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