L.A. OLA 2017 – Spanish Contemporary Cinema Showcase
The annual film showcase brings the best independent cinema from Spain to Los Angeles from May 18-21.
The Spanish filmmaking scene is emerging as one of the most fertile and successful in Europe with a new generation of young Spanish filmmakers who are winning great acclaim at prestigious international film festivals such as Locarno, Berlin, Rotterdam, and Cannes.
Despite their critical success, these groundbreaking Spanish films have struggled to gain access to the traditional distribution channels. L.A. OLA aims to create a bridge between Spain and the U.S., giving exposure to all these extraordinary films in such culturally relevant cities as Los Angeles and New York City. The showcase is a not-to-be-missed event for devotees of contemporary world cinema and a meeting point for two continents.
In addition to the screenings, L.A. OLA Los Angeles programming will include music performances, master classes and a panel discussion titled Women in the US and European Independent Film Industries.
Esa Sensación (That Feeling)
- On Thursday, May 18 at 8 pm. At the Rooftop Cinema Club at The Montalbán.
- Directed by Juan Cavestany, Pablo Hernando, and Julián Génisson, Spain, 2016, 79 minutes. In Spanish with English subtitles. View trailer.
- Preceded by the Short film Decorado by Alberto Vásquez.
Three Spanish directors tell three stories: about a woman who gets excited by inanimate objects (such as a parking meter, kitchen steps or a metal bridge); a man who follows his father in order to unravel his secret; and a couple of friends who suddenly, as if felled by a virus, display improper behaviour without wanting to. These three interwoven storylines seem at first sight to have little to do with each other, but a common feature is that the characters experience an unexpected and slightly addictive sensation. That enigmatic feeling drags them out of their daily routine and forces them to think about issues such as love, faith and human will.
Oleg y las raras artes (Oleg and the Rare Arts)
- On Friday, May 19, at 8 pm. At the Rooftop Cinema Club at The Montalbán
- Directed by Andrés Duque, Spain, 2016, 66 minutes. In Russian with English subtitles. View trailer.
- Preceded by the Short film Our Friend the Moon (Nuestra Amiga la Luna) by Velasco Broca.
Defying musical classification, pianist Oleg Nikolaevitch Karavaychuk is an icon in his native Russia but relatively unknown elsewhere. Largely banned from performing in public during the Soviet era, Karavaychuk instead made a career composing music for filmmakers like Sergei Parajanov, Vasily Shukshin, and Kira Muratova, and has recently expanded into multimedia performance. Andrés Duque’s affectionate, free-form portrait features the androgynous virtuoso wandering through the halls of the Hermitage while speaking about how he arrived at the museum that day, the art on the walls, and eventually his own life. In the spaces between, he performs his music with electric intensity.
Ingen Ko Pa Isen (No Cow on the Ice)
- On Saturday, May 20, at 7:30 pm. At the Echo Park Film Center.
- Directed by Eloy Domínguez Serén. Sweden, Spain, 2015, 63 minutes, in Swedish and Galician with English Subtitles. View trailer.
- Preceded by the Short film New Madrid by Natalia Marín.
Language and landscape as a gate into a new life. A young Galician filmmaker emigrates to Sweden, where he performs different part-time jobs. His learning of a new language and fascination for the Swedish landscape become a driving force against the difficult life conditions. As he learns about the culture, society and lifestyle, he develops a new identity.
Les amigues de l’Agata (Agata’s Friends)
- On Saturday, May 20, at 10 pm. At the Echo Park Film Center.
- Directed by Alba Cros, Marta Verheyen, Laura Rius, and Laia Alabart. Spain, 2015, 70 minutes, in Catalan with English Subtitles. View trailer.
Agatha has just started studying at University, but she’s still regularly seeing her school friends, with whom she has shared all her parties, intimacy moments, trips, jokes and common conversations. A private space full of memories, that now confronts with the new college’s friends and with her own changes that she’s starting to discover.
- On Sunday, May 21, at 7:30 pm. At the Egyptian Theater.
- Directed by Oliver Laxe. Spain, Morocco, France, Romania, Qatar, 2016, 96 minutes, in Arabic with English Subtitles. View trailer.
A caravan escorts an elderly and dying Sheikh through the Moroccan Atlas. His last wish is to be buried with his close ones. But death does not wait. The caravaners, fearful of the mountain, refuse to continue transporting the corpse. Saïd and Ahmed, two rogues traveling with the caravan, say they know the way and promise to take the corpse to its destiny. In another world, Shakib is chosen to travel to the mountains with a mission: to help the improvised caravaners.
For the first time this year, the festival also hits the East Coast from June 2 to June 4 with L.A. OLA: NYC edition at the prestigious Anthology Film archives.