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Thread: Sex and Lucia

  1. #1

    Sex and Lucia

    Lucia (Paz Vega) falls is love/obsession with Lorenzo (Tristan Ulloa) who unknowingly fathered a daughter, Luna (Silvia Llanos) in a one night stand/swim with a total stranger/Elena (Najwa Nimri). Luna is being looked after by Belen (Elena Anaya) and her mother the porn actress (Diana Suarez), who both live with Carlos/Antonio (Daniel Freire). I don't get all this straight until more than halfway through. Not because the writer/director Julio Medem can't tell a story, because he can, but because "this is a story with a hole at the end that takes you back to the middle where you can change your path, if you want, if you have the time." Well, I had the time, one hundred eighteen minutes to be exact, and if I could tune out the man eating his popcorn with lips apart and wait out the mother-daughter couple embarrassed by the sex and confused by the story, giggling and whispering for thirty minutes before finally leaving, and I was ready for a little magical realism.

    The day had been filled with realism of the ordinary ugly and pathetic sort. Bush sucking up to the Saudis in case we need an airstrip or two from which to smart bomb Sadaam and earn daddy's love, finally. The born-again FedEx lady on her day off bringing her coyote-victim three-legged cat in to show and tell. People running in the door slapping themselves so they won't get West Nile.

    Gabriel Garcia Marquez, master of magical realism, describes it as telling the fantastic tale with a brick face, a trick he learned from his grandmother. He tells us he couldn't manage it until he began to believe the story. Once he mastered it, he was able to pen One Hundred Years of Solitude, the best novel of the past fifty years.

    While Sex and Lucia is no Hundred Years, it is a strong breath of fresh air in cinema. It starts in the middle, jumps back six years and brings us up to current in an intricate and elegant mix of waking dreams, imagined trysts, real passion, and tragedy. Reminiscent of 1959's brilliant Suddenly Last Summer, with Elizabeth Taylor, Katherine Hepburn and Montgomery Clift, at its heart Sex and Lucia holds a dark and terrible secret, a secret slowly and delicately revealed. Lorenzo is a writer and much of the story is told from his keyboard. He fades in and out of his story, and we follow, never sure what is real and what is his story. In one electrifying scene, Lucia lays into him and there is no doubt about this reality. Her anger is palpable, her words fast and furious. I was so captivated by her furor I neglected to read some of the subtitles. When her anger is finally spent she says, "I'll never let myself talk this way again" and I believe her. She is magnificent.

    Much of the story takes place on a Mediterranean island where Lucia goes to make sense of Lorenzo's disappearance. The water, sand, sun and moon are surrealistically beautiful. Characters meld into the landscape. The story, the people, the island swirl and mix. The result is hypnotic and transfiguring. Sex and Lucia will take you there, if you want and you have the time. Take it.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    Ottawa Canada
    Posts
    5,499
    This is one of the films I've earmarked to see at the film festival in my city next week. It looks wonderful....review to follow?
    "Set the controls for the heart of the Sun" - Pink Floyd

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