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THE BLACK HAND

Spain, 1980 (MIFF 1981)

Director: Fernando Colomo

Manolo Falceto has just had this thirty-third birthday He lives with his parents and has finished a degree, but does not want to practise. He has a girlfriend to whom he does not want to be engaged He plays the double-bass.

One day, by chance, he meets Mariano Garrido, his closest schoolmate. They have not seen each other for twenty years. Mariano is the author, under a pseudonym, of a detective story, which has sold over a million copies in the USA.

A succession of strange happenings makes Manolo suspect that the novel is an autobiography and that under the writer is hiding something more complex.

The appearance of a third character makes Manolo's life even more difficult. He will have to choose between imagination and apparent reality, and he will understand at last that he is involved in an old-fashioned story with good guys and bad guys.

”Delightful, tongue-in-cheek spoof of the spy thriller genre scripted by the two leading young Spanish talents of the day, Fernando Colomo and Fernando Trueba, the latter the director of this year's local comedy hit, Opera Prima. Throughout, dialogue sparkles as droll take-offs on the spy genre succeed each other, but in a homespun sort of Spanish way which never takes itself quite seriously. Thesping is down to earth and natural and lines are delivered via direct sound and without the usual stilted style typifying the bulk of Spanish films.”

Variety

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