Based on actual historical events — a Spanish film crew did travel to Berlin’s UFA Studios in 1938 to make a version of Carmen — Trueba summons the ghosts of this unsettling story to present a perceptive look at the lies and delusions people tell themselves to survive in impossibly compromised situations. Eager to get out of Civil War-torn Spain, film director Blas Fontiveros (Antonio Resines) accepts the invitation to work in Germany. The Nazi Propaganda Ministry sees the opportunity for international self-promotion; its leader, Josef Goebbels, sees an opportunity to seduce the film’s sultry star, Macarena Granada (Penélope Cruz). As the cultural and political contradictions keep mounting, Fontiveros fears that not only will he not complete his film, but that he’ll never get back to Spain alive. Cruz won the Goya Award (Spain’s equivalent of the Academy Award) for Best Actress, and soon launched an international career.
In Spanish with English subtitles