Cría Cuervos (Cria!) (Raise Ravens) (1975)
Average Rating: 8.2/10
Reviews Counted: 16
Fresh: 16 | Rotten: 0
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Average Rating: N/A
Critic Reviews: 1
Fresh: 1 | Rotten: 0
Average Rating: 4.3/5
User Ratings: 3,308
Carlos Saura wrote and directed this powerful psychological drama in which family crises which reflect the embattled soul of a nation are seen through the eyes of an unusually perceptive child. Ana (Ana Torrent) is an eight-year-old girl growing up in a troubled household -- her father Anselmo (Hector Alterio) is a general in the Spanish military during the waning days of Franco's repressive regime, and her mother (Geraldine Chaplin) is dead, Ana having witnessed her agonizing final moments.
Jan 1, 1976 Limited
Aug 21, 2007
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Her [Torrent] expression in Cría cuervos is blank and beautiful, her gaze unfaltering. It's no exaggeration to say that there would be no movie without her: so much of the characterisation is embedded in her stillness.
Blurring fact and fantasy in a haunting evocation of the repression that marked the Franco era.
The title refers to the old saying: "Raise ravens and they'll peck your eyes out."
It's unsettling, moving and funny in turn, and a clear criticism of a regime that stifled the Spanish for decades.
The film fluidly moves between reality and fantasy, past and present, never delineating them clearly, suggesting they all have the same texture in Ana's mind and are part of the same continuum.
The film is a masterpiece of form and technique, and Chaplin and Torrent are both outstanding.
It unfolds like a kind of morbid reverie, reverberating with strange frissons about what one generation passes to the next, and how even rebellion is a kind of heirloom.
As the child who believes she has power over death after witnessing the demise of her father, Ana Torrent superbly conveys that mix of terror and innocence that is unique to childhood.
A richly shot, impressively acted film containing a powerful, bleak vision of both childhood and a repressive adult world.
Set in 1974, the last year of Spanish dictator Franco's regime, Carlos Saura's melodrama draws intriguing analogies between a girl haunted by hallucinations and the broader political context.
An hypnotic arthouse psychological drama that complexly mixes reality and fantasy.
A seamless story about memory and fantasy blurring together, Cría cuervos is unquestionably Carlos Saura's greatest film.
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