Criterion is proud to present Víctor Erice’s spellbinding The Spirit of the Beehive (El espíritu de la colmena), widely regarded as the greatest Spanish film of the 1970s. In a small Castilian village in 1940, in the wake of the country’s devastating civil war, six-year-old Ana attends a traveling movie show of Frankenstein and becomes possessed by the memory of it. Produced as Franco’s long regime was nearing its end, The Spirit of the Beehive is a bewitching portrait of a child’s haunted inner life and one of the most visually arresting movies ever made.
—The Criterion Collection
Spanish director Victor Erice made two of his country’s most important and critically lauded films, El Espiritu de la Colmena (The Spirit of the Beehive) (1973) and Sur (The South) (1983). Erice had studied political science before entering the Instituto de Investigaciones y Experiencias Cinematográficas in 1960. Shortly after graduation in 1963, he worked as a film critic and worked on the script for Antonio Eceiza’s El Proximo Otoño (Next Autumn) (1963). He also collaborated on Miguel Picazo’s Oscuros Sueños de Agosto (Dark Dreams of August) (1967). Influential producer Elías Querejeta provided Erice his first opportunity to direct by assigning him a chance to helm one of three episodes in Los Desafios (The Challenges) (1969). Following his success with El Sur, Erice became a prolific director of television commercials and worked uncredited on numerous other feature films. In 1992, Erice reemerged on the film scene with his dream-like documentary of painter Antonio Lopez’s quest for… read more
a very haunting film with a wonderfully distilled uneasy atmosphere. Can't go wrong with cinematography as good as this either.
The visuals are incredible. I feel like it creates a wonderful mood in the desertic region. It seems like after the war everyone wants to escape, and they do. The mother by sending letters and the father with his bees. They leave the girls to their imagination, and they make the most of it. I felt the story was good, but the last act is not that good. It doesn't feel conclusive. Apart from that, it's a great film.
A beautiful, stunning mediation on life and death in a child's life. This film may be slow and mostly quiet, but the cinematography is breathtaking. I was astonished to learn that the cinematographer was going blind during its production. There is more than enough political/historical symbolism in this film, which is certainly important to note. Tonight I will be haunted by the stillness of the bees and their hive.
Una película sobre la inocencia, una clave silente y llena de sensibilidades. La infancia es el tema central de "El espíritu de la colmena", un mundo donde los grandes tienen sus dramas que acallan, mientras que los niños rehuyen a sus propios mundos cándidos y curiosos. Hay una alegoría sobre cómo la realidad de pronto no tiene valor frente a la imaginación (ficción).
The cult director of Two-Lane Blacktop returns with his first feature in twenty years.
Whats up everybody? I’m taking it back to my old myspace blog days to talk about a movie that i use to always bring up on there. I just got back from my second trip to Barcelona, and realized i haven’t… read review
First of all, i wanna said thank you to Victor Erice, for making this visually breathtaking film. Without this film, i guarantee there will be no Pan’s Labyrinth. It is clear cut that Guillermo Del… read review
Absolutely loved the imagery in this film. I watched it last night and can’t stop thinking about it. A couple of scenes have been imprinted in my psyche: Isabel strangling the cat, Isabel jumping over… read review