San Sebastián, September 23 (EFE).- Ecuadorian filmmaker Ana Cristina Barragán will close the Horizontes Latino competition of the 70th edition of the San Sebastián festival this Friday with “La piel octopo”, the story of the close relationship between Iris and Ariel, 17-year-old twins who live on an island isolated from the rest of the world.

Inspired by Hirokazu Koreeda’s Nobody Knows, Barragán writes about a family that lives in isolation due to the decision of a mother “wounded by the city” and has a “decent and violent” behavior, the director explains in an interview. with Efe.

There is a very special “hermetic and intimate” relationship between the twins in the film about feelings that are also expressed outside of verbal. Unlike Yorgos Lanthimos’ Canino, which the director had not seen before his script was suggested to him, it is about teenagers “isolated in freedom”.

“I’m interested in what is not domesticated, what is outside the regulations,” explains Barragán (Quito, 1987), who spent a lot of time as a child on the Ecuadorian beach where the film was shot and where his father now lives. , in a beautiful natural environment.

This is not the case for the father of the boys in “Skin of the Octopus,” who decides to return to civilization and is a character who feels ashamed of his family.

During the film, dreamlike underwater images of octopuses and molluscs intersperse, representing, according to the director, “an underworld of strange species that just inhabit it and are a mystery.”

“I like to deal with characters who don’t fit into their surroundings and who go on quests from their loneliness,” explains Barragán, whose first feature film “Alba” (2016) premiered at the Rotterdam Film Festival. in more than 100 competitions and received more than 30 awards.


“La piel octopo” is the twelfth and last film to be premiered in the Horizontes Latinos feature film competition of the year, which has not been released in Spain, was produced in whole or in part in Latin America, directed by filmmakers of Latin origin, or whose setting or theme is Latino communities from other parts of the world.

Veteran Chilean director Patricio Guzmán opened the competition with a documentary about the revolution that erupted in Chile in 2019 and resulted in a new constitution to replace Pinochet’s constitution, which was recently rejected in a referendum.

Also from Chile came “1976”, Manuela Martell’s story about a tired bourgeois woman (Aline Kuppenheim) who finds herself on an interesting inner journey in the dangerous environment of secret opposition to a dictatorial regime.

In addition to literature, politics and history are also examined, with Cuba’s Pavel Giroud’s “El Caso Padilla,” showing unpublished footage of poet Heberto Padilla’s self-incriminating appearance before the writers’ guild after his arrest in 1971.

Colombians Andrés Ramírez Pulido and Fabián Hernández participate with the productions “La Jauría” and “Un varón” respectively, in which they delve into the stories of young people suffering from violence and poverty. “La Jauría”, which received the top prize at the Cannes critics’ week, takes us to an experimental rehabilitation center in the middle of the jungle, and the debut film “Un man” to the struggle for survival on the streets of Bogota.

Although they do not live in a criminal environment, they are also teenagers with emotions and anxieties typical of this stage of life, the protagonists of the story “Sublime” by the Argentine Mariano Biasini. This is an LGTB story that won the Sebastiane Latino Award. the award is given by a jury made up of members of the Basque Gay, Lesbian, Trans, Bi and Intersex Association.

For her part, Mexico’s Natalia Beristain has entered the competition with the anti-impunity “Ruido”, which tells the story of Julia, who becomes one of the women who search for the violently disappeared, in a drama starring Julieta Egurrola. , the principal’s mother.

Juan Pablo González, also Mexican, competes with “Two Seasons,” in which the protagonist tries to keep a Jalisco tequila factory afloat amid powerful foreign corporations.

Costa Rican Valentina Maurel’s “I have Electrical Dreams” delves into a teenager’s love affair with her abusive father, Cuban Carlos Lechu “Vicenta B.” but portrays Santeria as a balm that protects people’s loneliness. Cuban mothers who lose their children either by leaving the island or by being burned there.

Finally, Brazilian Carolina Makowicz’s first film “Carbón” was presented, in which a family living next to a factory takes in an Argentinian capo played by César Bordón in the story of how they cross borders. an absurd escape from poverty.

Tomorrow, Saturday, the winner of the Horizontes Prize will be announced at the closing gala of the San Sebastian Festival, which will be awarded 35,000 euros to a director and distributor in Spain.

Marina Estevez Torreblanca

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