Film Scouts Reviews

"Flamenco (de Carlos Saura)"

by Kathleen Carroll

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Spanish director Carlos Saura celebrates the vigorous, intensely passionate music of his homeland in FLAMENCO. The pounding heels and raspy vocals may not be music to your ears. Nor are there any sub-titled explanations of the various dances and songs, each of which reflect the diverse styles and cultural influences of the flamenco.

Still with the brilliant cinematographer Vittorio Storaro making a substantial artistic contribution Saura demonstrates once more his amazing ability to transform dance into high drama on film. Using just lighting tricks to suggest the passing of time Saura stages what looks like an all-night flamenco marathon on the bare floors of an improvised sound stage. The 300 performers, ranging from superbly graceful women in vintage white lace dresses to veteran male singers with leathery, world-weary faces, are almost all electrifying. But the show stopper is the incredibly sensuous farruca dance of the bare-chested Joaquin Cortes who will have audiences swooning in the aisles.

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