Cleveland International Film Festival } March 22 – April 1, 2023 } Playhouse Square

(Los santos innocentes)

Year: 1984
Country: Spain
Run Time: 108 minutes


A graduate of film studies in Spain, Mario Camus initially was a screenwriter whose first screenplays were collaborations with Carlos Suara. His feature film debut as a director was in 1963 and his many films to follow established his reputation in his native land. As a writer and director, Camus frequently adapts his films from Spanish literature, focusing on social problem themes. He came into international prominence with the release of "Beehive" in 1982, which won the Berlin Festival's Golden Bear. THE HOLY INNOCENTS affirms Camus' place in the forefront of contemporary Spanish cinema. Like a Spanish "Tree of Wooden Clogs," THE HOLY INNOCENTS presents a compassionate view of peasant life and their natural rapport with nature and the land - on which they toil in abject servility to rich estate owners. During the Franco regime, censors would never have permitted such a depiction of rural life in 1960s Spain as described through flashbacks weaving rhe story between 2 periods - before and after the fateful "event" that alters the lives of rich and poor alike. Both humorously and poignantly, the class struggle is never more metaphorically exemplified than in the unforgettable hunting sequences. Alfredo Landa as the grovelling Paco and Francisco Rabal as the simple-minded uncle with bizarre personal habits are superb in this gripping and remarkable film.

". . .Fine camerawork, excellent screenplay, first-rate thesping throughout, and perfect music. . .All in all, memorable, and undoubtedly one of the year's best films from Spain." -Variety

Antonio Larreta, Manuel Matji, Mario Camus (based on the novel by Miguel Delibes)

Julian Mateos

Hans Burmann

Jose Maria Biurrun

Principal Cast
Alfredo Landa, Francisco Rabal, Terele Pavez, Belen Ballesteros, Juan Sachez

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