7.9/10
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22 user 35 critic

El Sur (1983)

El sur (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama, Romance | 5 January 1984 (Netherlands)
A woman reflects on her childhood relationship with her father, attempting to understand the depths of his despair and the truth of his myths.

Director:

Víctor Erice

Writers:

Víctor Erice (screenplay), Adelaida García Morales (short story)
Reviews
7 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Omero Antonutti ... Agustín Arenas
Sonsoles Aranguren ... Estrella - 8 años
Icíar Bollaín ... Estrella - 15 años
Lola Cardona ... Julia
Rafaela Aparicio ... Milagros
Aurore Clément ... Irene Ríos / Laura
Maria Caro Maria Caro ... Casilda
Francisco Merino ... Enamorado
José Vivó José Vivó ... Camarero
Germaine Montero Germaine Montero ... Doña Rosario
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
José García García Morilla José García García Morilla ... Chófer
María Massip María Massip ... Estrella adulta (voice)
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Storyline

The movie tells a melancholic story of a little girl who is living in a city in the north of Spain. She is fascinated by the secrets of the south which seem to be hidden in the personality of her father. Written by Volker Boehm

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Sur est un seul et grand Tango

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Spain | France

Language:

Spanish

Release Date:

5 January 1984 (Netherlands) See more »

Also Known As:

El Sur See more »

Filming Locations:

Estella, Navarra, Spain See more »

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Box Office

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$11,959
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Director Víctor Erice considers this to be an unfinished project. The original script consisted of more than 400 pages and was scheduled to be shot in 81 days. 48 days into shooting, when production was to be moved to north Spain, producer Elías Querejeta unexpectedly suspended the project, allegedly because of financing objections by Televisión Española, the backing television network. However, Querejeta revealed years later that he made the decision because he though the movie was finished with what they've shot so far. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Caso cerrado (1985) See more »

Soundtracks

Yo tengo dentro de mí
Composed by Enric Granados
See more »

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User Reviews

 
The phases of the murky relationship between a girl and her father, set in misty, northern post-war Spain.
1 August 2006 | by interpreterSee all my reviews

This story unfolds in delicate time in the history of modern Spain, as well as during a precarious time in the life of a family.

Adolescent Estrella lives in awe of her mysterious and magical father, wonderfully played by Omero Antonutti, and weary of her ever-practical mother and of their isolated life in the misty and brooding northern countryside. Estrella's fascination with her father turns to intrigue- and then to obsession- when she discovers that her father has a secret, and realizes that she is only one facet of her father's life and not the central figure, as he is to her.

After a ray of sunshine is cast into her dark and insular life by the visit of one of her father's aunts (played by the late Rafaela Aparicio in one of her best roles), Estrella yearns to capture more of the essence of her father by one day visiting "el sur" (the south)—his home territory.

As Estrella enters the awkward realm of adolescence, she grows apart from her father emotionally. A tragic turn of events condemns him to remain a mythical figure for her—someone she wonders if she ever knew at all. The supreme irony is that she is very like him.

This film is captivating, both visually and emotionally, and the audience becomes just as absorbed in the story as the characters themselves. It is one of those films whose imagery will always stay in one's memory, such as in the my favorite scene, where father and daughter sit distantly across a table from each other in an old café, listening to the eerie sound of a "pasodoble" that wafts from a wedding in another room, bringing memories of happier, simpler days.


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