Sunday, April 13, 2008

Talk Cinema/"Elsa Y Fred"

"Elsa Y Fred" (Spain/Argentina 2005) is a wonderful gem of a movie, and yet another Talk Cinema reminder of why I love the movies so much.

Ostensibly a love story between a free-spirited 78 year-old widow and a repressed 79 year-old widower she woos, attempting to free him from his practiced torpor.

It is a love story to film (in particular to fellini's "La Dolce Vita" with elements of "Harold and Maude" and "Cinema Paradiso" and even "Harry & Tonto"), a love story to falling in love despite age or infirmity, and a love story to living life free from fear.

It posits that while many elderly sufffer from the fear of dying, far too many suffer from a fear of living. That worse than the inevitability of death is dying having not lived as fully as one could have/should have.

Fred (Alfredo) is played by Spanish actor Manuel Alexandre, Elsa by Uruguyan actor China Zorilla, both somewhat older than the characters they embody so fully and well. I cannot recommend this movie highly enough.


deeceevoice said...

You've sold me on "Elsa y Fred." It's been a long time since I saw "La Dolce Vita," "Harry and Tonto" and "Harold and Maude," but I have distinct impressions of all three. I'm hoping "Elsa y Fred" will play another venue soon so I can catch it. Thanks for the heads-up/recommendation. I'll definitely keep it in mind. :)

Dr. F. said...

I'm told its supposed to open in DC in May or June. It was released in Argentina and Europe in 2005.

Not clear why it hasn't been picked up for U.S. distribution before now, which is why film festivals continue to thrive.