Catalan master Ventura Pons expertly weaves together past and present in Forasters. As Josep prepares to purchase his family’s Barcelona flat, sepia-toned memories of his sickly mother Emma (stage veteran Anna Lizaran), strict father Francesc, rebellious sister Anna, and their boisterous Andalusian neighbors come rushing forth. Starting in the late 1960s, the fates of the two families join together. By monstrous and sympathetic turns of events, Emma has a soft spot for sad-eyed Manuel but refuses to let her son and daughter run off with these foreigners. Like cancer, xenophobia and homophobia stalk her clan from one century to the next. In the end, Emma represents a relic of a bygone era, but Lizaran brings this relic into vibrant life. Pons upsets the “sensible” mentality of these traditional individuals and lays bare our reluctance to trust the unknown. Lizaran, who also plays Anna as an adult, won a Gaudí, the Spanish Academy Award, for her indelible performance. –SIFF
Ventura Pons Sala (Catalan pronunciation: [bənˈtuɾə ˈpɔns]) (born 25 July 1945, in Barcelona, Catalonia) is a Catalan movie director.
After a decade as a theatre director, Ventura Pons directed his first film in 1977, Ocaña, an Intermittent Portrait, which was officially selected by the 1978 Cannes Film Festival. With eighteen feature films, sixteen of which were produced by his own company Els Films de la Rambla, S.A., founded in 1985, he has become one of the best-known Catalan film directors.
His work has been shown at the best international film festivals, most notably at the Berlin International Film Festival for many consecutive years.
He began his movie career making comedies about local customs (The Vicary of Olot and What’s your bet, Mari Pili?, for example). Since 1995 he has chosen to adapt dramatic and comic texts of Catalan writers like Quim Monzó (What It’s All About), Josep Maria Benet i Jornet (Actresses, Amic/Amat), Sergi Belbel (Caresses, To Die… read more