“Black bread”. Story of growth

“Black bread” is a Spanish story of 11 year old boy Andreu becoming an adult.

The movie starts violently – with the scene where a man and a horse are being smashed with a hammer and then thrown down from the rocky scarp by some mysterious man with a cloak – the threatening shadow of this scene is following during all the movie. Andreu, the main character, is the one who find them. The boy which has been hiding inside the crashed wagon just before his death coughs up the name of the beast from the village horror stories – Pitorliua. But Andreu`s father is suspected to be the mysteriuos killer. The boy can believe that it could be his lovely father`s guilt so he decides to find the answer on his own.

The plot of the film is taking place in post-Civil war Catalonia. The war had destroyed the dreams, plans of people so they are lost in the world of grudge, anger, lies, trying to reach their dreams in a perverted way. Andreu is young, he lives in his own beautiful world, where he still believes the magic stories about the mysterious beasts. While he is searching for an answer about the crime, he finds the mysterious beast in his own cave…

This movie talks not only about kind of philosophical truths – the social problematic isn`t also forgotten. This topical social aspect is homophobia. It happens so that Andreu is aesthetically delighted by some homosexual guy who stays in the mental hospital. The guy is so beautiful that for the boy he looks like an angel. And while our main character is searching for answers about the past, he sees his father in a terrible light – being tragically violent against not normal men. Everything`s mixing up in the boy`s head.

One of the most surprising things in the “Black bread” is the persuasive acting of the children. Although the acting of female actors can look too emotional, especially for the viewers up North. I would say that`s because of the temperament difference.

And to talk about the visual part – the film is pretty realistic, it sufficiently right represents the time. Even tough I would say that the digital graphics used to create the view of the village falls out from the movie`s visual context.

The movie itself is not giving a high impression, not raising so much emotions, although the violent, nasty and psychologically hard things are happening. Some might be angry that this film didn`t let them to drop a tear and some might feel happy that it was let to observe the bends of the plot freely and objectively analyze it.

by Jorė Janavičiūtė

Black Bread (Pa Negre)

Director: Agustí Villaronga
Spain, drama, 2010, 108 min.
Screenplay: Emili Teixidor, Agustí Villaronga
Camera: Antonio Riestra
Music: José Manuel Pagán

Francesc Colomer, Marina Comas, Nora Navas, Roger Casamajor, Lluïsa Castell

This entry was posted by Jorė Janavičiūtė.

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