Thursday, October 2, 2008

LA CAJA

LA CAJA
(THE WOODEN BOX)


Antonia San Juan, Angela Molina, Mari Carmen Sanchez, Elvira Minguez


Pelikula: Spanish Film Festival
Cinema 1, Greenbelt 3



The opening scene of this film is set in a hospital where Don Lucio has just died. His widow, Eloisa take his body home in order to prepare it for the wake and funeral. One by one his neighbors drop by to pay their last respects to Don Lucio, a man who was much hated for his despicable personality. The inhabitants of the small fishing town finally get to settle old scores and in the process heal their wounds.

A dark comedy based on a novel by Victor Ramirez, this film was mostly populated with fascinatingly strong female characters. Each of them portrayed by good Spanish character actresses with interestingly colorful personalities.

The movie had a cohesive plot with its fair share of funny moments tinged with dry humor. It was very interesting to watch the way certain shocking details of Don Lucio's life were revealed by his neighbors reaction to his death. In certain scenes, the disclosure were spilled through the dialogue. While other times it was disclosed through visual effects. The pacing of the film was well developed so as not to shock the audience in just one sitting.

The Filipino audience could very well relate to some of the shenanigans of the Spanish characters, their personalities, their way of thinking as well as their way of life. Familiar rituals like holding a wake, inviting people to recite the rosary for the soul of the deceased are now very much ingrained in Filipino society.

This quirky comedy was a delight to watch. I strongly recommend it for its view on the way we live our life as well as how we want to be remembered by our peers when we reach the end of our existence on earth.

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