Pos eso brings a bit of craziness to Gijón
by Gonzalo Suárez
- The director of the multi-award-winning short Vicenta is the only Spaniard taking part in the AnimaFICX section of the 52nd Gijón Film Festival
La Trini is a popular flamenco dancer and a favourite celebrity of the gossip magazines, but she has an awful lot on her plate. On top of the depression she is suffering from following the fatal accident that befell her husband, the well-known bullfighter Gregorio, her son Damián now has a life-threatening illness. Neither medicine, psychology nor acupuncture can successfully get to the bottom of what is happening to the boy. The family’s only hope is a gypsy lady, who comes to the conclusion that Damián has been possessed by the devil and that Father Lenin will have to be the one to save him. Born to Republicans, Lenin entered the priesthood and, following his disagreements with the ecclesiastical hierarchy, is now nothing but an alcoholic tramp.
This is the outrageous storyline into which, over the four years that the project has taken to come to fruition, Samuel Ortí Martí, or Sam, has poured all his imagination, bad humour and claymation skills. Indeed, he is “one of the best in the world”, according to the director of the Gijón Film Festival, Nacho Carballo, who presented the screening of the movie last night in the AnimaFICX section, after it passed through Sitges.
Pos eso starts off with a brilliant scene in which Father Lenin has to negotiate some ingenious ancient obstacles in order to get his hands on an old treasure. What at first glance promises to be an adventure film à la Indiana Jones quickly veers off towards the wildest fantasy-horror territory (there are numerous nods to The Exorcist and The Day of the Beast), as the possessed child starts getting up to his old tricks, gradually and mercilessly putting an end to the most traditional, “real” Spain, which is already corrupted as it is.
In addition to the myriad animated cameos (Paco de Lucía, Belén Esteban, Torbe and so on), some big names from the world of Spanish film and television, such as Josema Yuste, Anabel Alonso and Santiago Segura, lend their voices to the title, thus branding their characters with the same degree of clarity with which the hilarious jets of vomit and blood splatters are shown on screen. In this respect, at the few, but significant, points when the script ventures into extremely familiar territory, using stereotypes or a few all-too-easy jokes, the handcrafted virtuosity and the sheer energy transmitted by the stop motion combined with 3D animation come to the rescue, thus keeping the viewer hooked. However, perhaps the director of the multi-award-winning short Vicenta is confining the audience too much within Spanish borders for the movie to enjoy a long career in other parts of the world – something that, from a technical point of view, it undoubtedly deserves to do.
Pos eso is a production by Basque Films and Conflictivos Productions, the outfit founded by Sam himself.
(Translated from Spanish)