Spanish film festival back in movie theaters

From 5 to 16 October, the 21st Pelicula: Spanish Film Festival will return to face-to-face screenings.

After two years of having a virtual festival, Pelicula will screen around 20 movies in three venues of Metro Manila including Shangri-La Plaza, Cine Adarna at University of the Philippines (UP) Diliman, and Instituto Cervantes Intramuros branch.

Since its establishment in 2002 by Instituto Cervantes de Manila, Pelicula has been an annual attraction. After the height of the Covid-19 crisis which forced cinemas to close worldwide and caused audiences of Pelicula to migrate online, the festival returns to the big screen, on a first-come, first-served free admission basis. Furthermore, the festival will also host face-to-face online screenings in Malaysia and Australia, as well as the Philippines.

‘OREINA’ by Koldo Almandoz.

In the Philippines, the festival will open on 5 October with El buen patrón (Fernando León de Aranoa, 2021), a comedy starring Javier Bardem. Other comedies in the line-up include La boda de Rosa (Icíar Bollaín, 2020), El test (Dani de la Orden, 2022), Con quién viajas (Martín Cuervo, 2021). The official entries also include documentaries such as A las mujeres de España. María Lejárraga (Laura Hojman, 2022), dramas such as Maixabel (Icíar Bollaín, 2021) or El olvido que seremos (Fernando Trueba, 2020), and thrillers like La hija (Manuel Martín Cuenca, 2021).

Pelicula will also feature Latin American films such as the Colombian documentary Jinetes del Paraíso (Talia Osorio Cardona, 2020), the Panamenian comedy Algo azul (Mariel García Spooner, 2021), and Competencia oficial, a Spanish-Argentinean comedy directed in 2021 by Gastón Duprat and Mariano Cohn, and featuring Penélope Cruz, Antonio Banderas, and Oscar Martínez.

Audiences may vote for their favorite films in the Audience Choice Awards. Established in 2004, the award will be given to the film that the viewers have voted as the best of the Festival. The film with the highest ratings will again receive this year’s Audience Choice Award and will be screened again during the closing of Pelicula 2022, on 16 October.

To celebrate the 21st holding of the festival, there will be a short series of movies coming from the Basque country (featuring Handia, and Oreina, among others), plus a special selection of classic Spanish films, to be shown online. These films are Esa pareja feliz (Juan Antonio Bardem and Luis García Berlanga, 1951), Muerte de un ciclista (Juan Antonio Bardem, 1953), Mamá cumple cien años (Carlos Saura, 1979) and El sur (Víctor Erice, 1983).

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