La Noche que dejó de llover (Spleen)

2017 March 16
by Josh


Dir. Alfonso Zarauza

Starring Luis Tosar, Fede Celada, Miguel de Lira


Screened at Cornerhouse as part of ¡Viva! 15th Spanish & Latin American Film Festival.


Spleen is an 30 something year old adolescent daydreamer, an armchair philosopher and a small town dandy who plans to leave his mother and the family umbrella repair business and travel, enjoying his love of The Smiths and bad girls with fringes. It has rained for three months non-stop in his hometown, Santiago de Compostela, but one day the rain finishes and Spleen meets a bad girl with a fringe in his favourite bar and second home, The Dramatists Tavern. La Rusa, (The Russian) and Spleen share a night of surrealism, romance and drama as they try and find Spleens hat, stolen by kidnapping ravers.


Luis Tosar stars as Spleen and transforms him from a strange man who refuses to grow, into an extremely likeable sincere character. However Nora Tschirner as La Rusa lacks the charm of Spleen and the two seem like an unlikely match, despite the fringe. Up until the romance the film was quirky, original and amusing, after they fall madly in love the dialogue and action becomes generic although something may have got lost in translation.


During the festival as well as other Spanish cinema I’ve seen, it’s hard not to notice that a Spanish film doesn’t seem quite complete without a huge amount of blood shed, even the festival comedy La Virgin Negra ended in a blood bath. So Spleen could not end without at least some blood, despite his redemption the film ended on a strange downturn that seemed melodramatic and inconsistent. This might be due to a difference in cinema conventions; here we need to end in marriage, in Spain films may have to end in death.


An interesting film marred by an over sentimental romance.


Laura Moffitt