Directors Alfonso Cuarón, Guillermo del Toro and Alejandro González Iñárritu are some of the most influential and idiosyncratic voices in the film industry today. They’ve long been referred to as cinema’s Three Amigos, but the group extends beyond directors to cinematographers such as Emmanuel Lubezki (Y Tu Mamá También) and Rodrigo Prieto (Amores Perros) and others, including Oscar-winning production designer Eugenio Caballero (Pan’s Labyrinth).
April 14 & 20: Special double feature of Pan's Labyrinth and The Devil's Backbone
El Laberinto del Fauno (Pan's Labyrinth), 2006, Guillermo del Toro
Set against the backdrop of the a post-Civil War Spain, PAN’S LABYRINTH is a visually stunning Spanish-language fairy tale with a dark heart. In 1944, a young girl named Ofelia avoids a bleak home life–including an ill, pregnant mother and a new, murderous military step-father–by retreating into an imaginative world of fairies and monsters. After ignoring a warning against entering the mysterious labyrinth near her new home, Ofelia meets a faun who sends her off on a wonderfully eerie journey. According to the faun, Ofelia must complete three tasks to resume her position as the long-lost Princess Moanna, a seemingly perfect offer in contrast with Ofelia’s grim waking life. When tragedy strikes and Ofelia finds her way deeper into a dark fantasy world, del Toro’s mesmerizing production and a haunting score by Javier Navarette take over, culminating in an unforgettable conclusion.
El Espinazo del Diablo (The Devil's Backbone), 2001, Guillermo del Toro
Violent young boys and desperate adults alike harbor secrets in THE DEVIL’S BACKBONE, a Spanish drama-horror set in an overcrowded (and possibly haunted) Spanish orphanage in 1939. Young Carlos, the orphanages’ newest arrival, struggles to fit in at a strange place where hope and dread are signified in turn by a stash of hidden gold and an undetonated Spanish Civil War bomb in the courtyard. Soon Carlos strikes up an unexpected friendship with a bully named Jaime, and is visited by a ghostly apparition who warns him of the deaths of many. A sprawling cast of characters, including administrators with hidden relationships and boys with ill intentions, makes for a pastiche of dark emotion and visual lyricism, all of which turns horrific when the story of a missing boy named Santi comes to light.
May 12: Double feature of Y Tu Mamá También and Amores Perros
Y Tu Mamá También, 2001, Alfonso Cuarón
The lives of Julio and Tenoch, like those of 17-year old boys everywhere, are ruled by raging hormones, intense friendships, and a headlong rush into adulthood. Over the course of a summer, the two best friends, while living out a carefree cross-country escapade with a gorgeous older woman, also find connection with each other, themselves and the world around them. Y Tu Mamá También stars Maribel Verdú, Gael García Bernal and Diego Luna.
Amores Perros, 2000, Alejandro Gonzalez Iñarritu
A bold, intensely emotional, and ambitious story of lives that collide in a Mexico City car crash. Inventively structured as a triptych of overlapping and intersecting narratives, Amores Perros explores the lives of disparate characters who are catapulted into unforeseen dramatic situations instigated by the seemingly inconsequential destiny of a dog named Cofi. Amores Perros stars Emilio Echevarría, Gael García Bernal and Goya Toledo.
San Francisco: April 14 - May 12 at The Roxie.