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Belle Epoque

Belle Époque is an outstanding film. Maribel Verdu looks absolutely beautiful. Actually, all the main characters do. The film's brilliance lies in a wonderfully genuine portrayal of everyday life. You'll be disappointed if you decide to watch this movie somewhere in the middle of the X-Men trilogy. While there may be no action heroes in this one, there's plenty of action, and it's done with the utmost taste and style. That's reason enough for watching. It's not a porno though, but here's something it definitely is. Unlike Hollywood's unrealistically gut wrenching dramas filled with the tearful screams of assaulted women, fueled by an ever growing number of one dimensionally cruel men, all done in an attempt to present a sophisticated analysis of everyday life, this movie actually presents a sophisticated analysis of everyday life! Belle Époque manages to avoid a single blow, scream or any other action for that matter not belonging in real life. Except maybe the very first scene, which redeems itself by being so unpretentiously philosophical. Instead, we get a wonderful rare glimpse of the very same awkwardly confusing moments, timid desires and childishly idealistic hopes that seem to littler our own lives. To summarize the plot, a young Spanish soldier first meets a middle aged/old man, and then meets his 4 beautiful daughters. There are several sub-plots, based on the various political and social changes sweeping through Spain at the time. These diversions from the character's lives actually end up seamlessly integrated with the main plot, because Spain's political and social unrest actually ends up effecting the actions of all the characters the same way it probably effected everyone who actually lived through it. By all means, check this one out.

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