Spain, 1976, 107 min, 35mm, Dir. Carlos Saura, Rated PG, Janus Films, Spanish with English subtitles
"Miss Chaplin has never before in a film I've seen so thoroughly realized herself as an actress. She's excellent in Cría!" - Vincent Canby, NY Times
The great Geraldine Chaplin returns to the Gables Cinema to celebrate the 40th anniversary of one of the most wonderful films about childhood, Carlos Saura's Cría! (Cría Cuervos). Taking its cue from the Spanish saying "raise ravens and they'll peck out your eyes," the movie is a vivid portrait of life in Franco's Spain as seen through the eyes of Ana (Ana Torrent), a nine-year-old saucer-eyed orphan who calmly goes around disposing with rat poison everyone who crosses her, that is, everyone she blames for her woes. But Saura's film is no gothic horror tale just as the rat poison may not be anything more than bicarbonate of soda. Though the film is rueful in its evocation of a troubled childhood, it is buoyed by the high spirits and unbridled imagination of the precocious child. Torrent earned a lofty place in Spanish film history with her performances here and in the earlier Spirit of the Beehive. Chaplin is splendid in a double role as Ana's mother and Ana as an adult. Argentina's Héctor Alterio plays Ana's adulterous father with military aplomb. The scene where Ana and her sisters dance to Jeannette's pop ballad "¿Porqué te vas?" (Why Are You Leaving?) is pure joy in a time capsule; the inspiration for the theme song of François Truffaut's Love On The Run (L'amour en fuite). In Cría! (winner of the Special Grand Jury Prize at Cannes) Saura comes closest to spinning a yarn with the logic of a dream in the seamless style of Surrealist mentor Luis Buñuel, to whom he pays tribute with the unsettling image of a plate of chicken feet in the fridge.Join us for an introduction and a Q&A session with very special guest Geraldine Chaplin.
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