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The Queen of Spain Image

The Queen of Spain

La reina de España

Panorama | Contemporary World Cinema

Thinking of all the sexy, vivacious, liberating movies that Spain produces, it’s hard to imagine how Franco kept a lid on the country for so long. This sly film takes place during the dictator’s rule and has great fun sending him up, while also directing its satire at Hollywood’s Golden Age. It’s a historical comedy, set during the 50s and featuring Penélope Cruz as Macarena Granada, a Spanish actress cum Hollywood star who’s back in her native country to shoot a picture. Invited by Franco himself, the studios are collaborating with the Spanish industry on a movie about the country’s royalty. Granada winds up a participant in a plot to spring ex-lover Blas Fontiveros (Antonio Resines) from government custody and get him out of the country.

The behind-the-scenes farce is a time-honoured tradition, and writer-director Fernando Trueba, with his self-conscious wit and old-fashioned sense of showmanship, is just the right filmmaker to fulfill it. This is a delight from first moment to last—a mixture of affectionate and not-so-affectionate satire that hits its targets dead centre. Cruz is a delight, and Cary Elwes, Clive Revill and Mandy Pantinkin all do wonderful turns as her American colleagues.

"Cruz carries the film. She has a ridiculous kind of heroism, and her disguises are hilarious…"—Peter Bradshaw, Guardian

Director Fernando Trueba
Country of Origin: Spain
Year: 2016
Running Time: 128 mins
Format: DCP
Language:In Spanish with English subtitles
Related Links: Cineuropa review
Cast: Penélope Cruz, Cary Elwes, Mandy Patinkin, Antonio Resines, Jorge Sanz, Santiago Segura
Executive Producer: Kirk D'Amico, Audrey Delaney, Anne Deluz, Kevin D. Forester, Cristina Huete, Rosa Perez
Producer: Penélope Cruz, Mercedes Gamero, Mikel Lejarza Ortiz
Cinematographer: José Luis Alcaine
Editor: Marta Velasco
Production Design: Juan Pedro de Gaspar
Music: Zbigniew Preisner
Production Company: Fernando Trueba PC
Print Source: Pacific Northwest Pictures


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