Medem's ode to women
by Vitor Pinto
Six years after the controversial, Goya-winning documentary The Basque Ball: Skin Against Stone (La pelota vasca. La piel contra la piedra), celebrated Basque director Julio Medem is back with Chaotic Ana, which he describes as "an ode to the fight of a woman [against the] tyranny of the white man."
One of the most anticipated local productions of the year, Chaotic Ana was shot in Ibiza, Madrid, New York and Arizona, places that main character Ana encounters throughout her hypnotic journey of self-discovery.
It was an international shoot for the most international cast of a Medem film so far. Spanish 20-year old newcomer Manuela Vellés – a serious contender for the upcoming Berlinale Shooting Stars – shares the screen with British actors Charlotte Rampling and Asier Newman and with France's Nicolas Cazalé (Le Fils de l'épicier). Singer-turned-actress Bebe (The Education of Fairies) and Raúl Peña are among the other Spanish members of the cast.
Already explored in The Lovers of the Arctic Circle and Sex and Lucia, Medem's lyrical style continues in this film with several political metaphors built around the director's conviction that "the white man is most responsible for the misfortune of mankind," whereas women, personified by Ana, symbolise "life, fertility and the continuity of the human race."
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