10 July 2000 | vytas_
Viva las mariposas!
In this film, we see Spain lurching toward the brink of the Spanish Civil War through the huge uncomprehending eyes of the child Moncho. The metaphor for "Butterfly" has many complex applications in this film but for me the most profound of them was the moment that Moncho's saintly teacher captures a butterfly in a net, tenderly observes it and then sets it free. If only the future of Spain had been in such sensitive hands. As the film progresses through its beautifully photographed scenes of ordinary life, the reality of the evils of Fascism and the hope of the Republicans begin to chasm the serenity of the land.
The film is not about war, it is rather, about how much personal honor people will trade for an idea of security for themselves and their families. In a way, it parallels the dilemma in the scene in Eisenstein's STRIKE in which a woman with starving children is thrown a coin by one of the factory bosses. Wonderfully executed performances in a profoundly moving film. -Rowena Silver