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Panorama entry about the issue of immigrants in Spain in the times of crisis shows at the Berlinale

posted 19 Feb 2011, 09:58 by Mpelembe   [ updated 19 Feb 2011, 10:01 ]
Spanish director Fernando Leon de Aranoa and Peruvian actress Magaly Solier introduced their latest film 'Amador' at the Berlin Film Festival on Wednesday (February 16).

In the movie, Solier plays Marcela, a young woman in financial straits. She is delighted when she finds a new job: she is to spend the summer looking after an old, bedridden man named Amador and keep him company every day as long as his relatives are on holiday. Marcela and Amador are soon sharing all sorts of secrets.

Marcela is pregnant - and has been so for several months. She hasn't told a soul yet, not even her boyfriend, whom she doesn't really trust. Amador knows that he does not have much longer to live; he can even feel his life slipping away from him. Perhaps this is why he is the only one who has been able to sense the new life growing inside Marcela.

The relationship that evolves between Marcela and Amador from now on may well stem from this proximity between life and death. Side by side, the two spend a lot of time together day after day in Amador's tiny bedroom where Marcela sits beside his bed. But then, one day, Amador dies. His death means Marcela is unemployed and puts the young woman in a quandary. But she finds a way out of her moral dilemma. Together with Amador, Marcela will prove that death doesn't necessarily put an end to life.

"The first thing I saw of her (Magaly Solier) was a photograph. I was very much attracted by this photograph," director Fernando Leon de Aranoa said to Reuters about why he chose Solier for the role of Marcela.

"Because her face was exactly the kind of face I was looking for. A woman from the 'sierra', a strong woman.What I also liked about this picture was that it showed a lot of her expression. I saw a lot of her expression in her eyes. And in this film a lot of things that are happening are taking place inside of Marcela. The whole ethic conflicts. All her worries had to be shown by expressions in a very subtle manner and not in many words. But at the same time with very strong and clear expressions."

To Solier, leaving Peru to shoot in Spain was a completely new experience:

"Yes, is was all very different here (Spain). it was all was very chronometrical. During the whole time it was like 'doing this, doing that, doing this' all the time. And the filming was neatly planned, the daily shooting will take exactly that long and I was getting dizzy because everything was so quick," she told Reuters.

"I've never filmed in a studio before. Inside one huge hall was the house of Amador and the house of Marcela and everything inside. And this changes your way of working a lot. I've never worked inside like this. And everybody is running around with walkie-talkies, nobody gets close, everybody is working with walki-talkies. And I felt yes, I like to work more like this. It helps you a little bit more and you don't get so worried."