Director Carla Simón / 2022 / Spain

The winner of the Berlinale’s Golden Bear for Best Film is a wistful, sun-drenched paean to family and tradition in the face of upheaval.

The Solé family are peach growers in the Catalan village of Alcarràs. They have tended their orchards for generations on land gifted to them by the Pinyol clan, but without a formal contract of ownership, the Solés are unable to claim the estate as theirs. Now, Joaquim Pinyol has decided it’s time to modernise. Confronted with imminent eviction, the tight-knit Solé household begins to fracture as each processes the uncertainty in their own way.

Catalonian writer/director Carla Simón made a splash with her autobiographical debut Summer 1993, and with her second feature she returns to the languid rural summers of her childhood – this time through a semi-fictionalised tale of familial anxiety. Her non-professional cast’s palpable connection with the land combines with Daniela Cajías’s gorgeous cinematography to evoke a lush sense of time and place as well as an intimate, loving story. From the chaos of unsteady ground, Alcarràs reaps humour, serene joy and tenderness.

“A beautifully observed, richly inhabited ensemble drama … Lovely, bittersweet … Confirms the strength and consistency of Simón’s directorial voice.” – Variety

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