Director – Alba Camarero, Thomas Camarero
Duration – 2 minutes 14 seconds
Country – Spain
Language – English
Year – 2019
SYNOPSIS : Altagracia (or ‘Grace divine’) was shot in the countryside outside Madrid and in a village in Extremadura (Spain). It deals with how tradition and religion still weigh on young Spaniards. Even if most of them no longer believe in anything and thus reflect a disappointed youth in the aftermath of May 15th movement and the subprime crisis, many of them are still in touch with this pervading folklore which, for some, is closer to pop culture than to religious practice itself. Religious imagery has become part of everyday life: processions, crucifixes, calendars honouring the village Patron Saint.On the other hand, there are many people who resent and oppose the Church’s dominance as well as the conservative parties who wish to bring back the moral codes of a bygone era (such as the newly arrived Vox, a far-right party sharing power over Andalucia).In no way does criticism target religion itself insofar as it promotes respect and love for one another, but its institutions and interpretations which sometimes mislead the faithful and nurture an unhealthy feeling of guilt.The imagery used has been subverted, but sometimes remains straightforward: the monk and his white eyes blinded by religion, the young man continuously praying in the bathroom, some animals such as the lamb (embodiment of Jesus’s sacrifice), and some horses (a pagan symbol abundantly found in Lorca’s poetry and standing for repression), the Virgin Mary surrounded by all these animals and shedding blue tears, etc. But can Spanish youth be saved?
DMOFF AWARD –
Official Selection May 2019