DIRECTOR: Iciar Bollain
SPAIN / 2016
BOFA 2021 Online Film Festival
RUNNING TIME: 100 MINS
A small, soulful film … with staggering landscapes.
In many Spanish villages, the most important historical artefact is not the church, or the town hall, or the Roman fountain in the square. It is the thousand-year-old village olive tree. This delightfully intimate film by respected director Iciar Bollain contrasts a poor yet stunning rural Spanish landscape against the clinical efficiency of a German industrial conglomerate. The Germans have bought and taken away one of the oldest trees from a local farm, to use as a greenwashing logo. This has sent the family patriarch into depression and dementia – so his granddaughter vows to go to Germany to get it back, and save her grandfather. The unfolding story is part beautiful imagery, part Samson vs Goliath, part edge-of-seat detective/baddie story. Mix all these together and you get an hour and a half of pure, satisfying, breathtaking and elegantly crafted entertainment. This is a film that everybody in the family will bond with and enjoy, and talk about for days afterwards.
AWARDS: Winner, Best Actress, Goya Awards 2017