Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Momentary Change of Pace: Just Because -- Laura del Sol and Cristina Hoyos in "Carmen"

Long ago I posted a couple of scenes from Carlos Sauras's film of his Flamenco version of "Carmen," a truly brilliant 1983 movie that has become practically legendary in certain circles.

This has got to be one of the most extraordinary dance sequences ever filmed, and there are many in this movie. I'd say it is like nothing else ever put on film, but it isn't -- because there are several Carlos Saura flamenco movies floating around, including "El Amor Brujo", "Bodas de Sangre", and "Salome" that are artistic knock-outs.

Saura's brilliance, of course, is in the transformation of a very ancient, tradition-bound and specialized dance form into a story telling form for film, and in his stunning staging (especially for "Carmen").

The larger point being "We're not really stuck on the treadmill repeating the same things over and over; we can use so very much from the past to create something new and startling and wonderful."

It's a message we need to keep hearing.


  1. That gave me goose bumps. Now I want to see the movie. I wish I could understand Spanish as I did lo these many years ago in high school... I keep thinking about re-learning it. There are certainly enough people around my area with whom to practice.

  2. Wasn't that something? The whole movie is literally breathtaking.

    I've seen it several times, and I don't recall whether it was in Spanish without subtitles or not. What I do recall was that the language spoken in the film was mostly Castillian, and at the time, I struggled with it mightily, having "learned" -- well, let's say absorbed some of -- Mexican Spanish, which ain't the same thing at all...

    Since then, it's become much easier. Though I still stumble.

    The French versions I've seen are fine, of course, but to see it translated this fully into the Spanish idiom is just great.

    Glad you liked it!