Directed by: Humberto Solás
Cuba | 1968 | Drama| 160 min | Black & White
Spanish w/ English Subtitles
Saturday Jul 23 04:00 pm
Narrated in three segments, each focused on a woman named Lucia, the film outlines the history of modern Cuba. The 1895 segment transpires in Havana’s aristocracy against the backdrop of the Spanish-American war where Lucia (Raquel Revuelta) compromises her family’s support for Cuban independence when she falls in love with a Spanish gentleman. In the 1930s, an educated middle-class Lucia (Eslinda Núñez - Memories of Underdevelopment) works in a factory while secretly engaged in a romance with an underground freedom fighter opposing the dictatorship of Gerardo Machado. In the 1960s, set in Castro’s Cuba, an illiterate peasant girl named Lucia (Adela Legrá) participates in the literacy drive aimed to spread education among the rural poor. Her self-emancipation is thwarted by her husband who, despite the revolution, remains bound by outdated notions of machismo.
Seeking what he describes as “a coherent, lucid, and dignified appreciation of our national past”, Humberto Solás created a new genre of historical melodramas in Cuban cinema. Lucía was his greatest success, beloved in Cuba and acknowledged as a powerful achievement internationally, gaining a Gold Medal at the Moscow Film Festival of 1969.
"Lucia is a unique amalgam of Soviet style montage, hand-held shots in the manner of the early New Wave, and baroque stylization that recalls Antonioni and Bertolucci." Filmreference.com
"Easily the finest film to come out of Cuba in the ’60s, Solas’ powerful triptych depicts three stages in his country’s - and his countrywomen’s - struggle for liberation. Using a different idiom and visual style for each era (high-contrast melodrama for the 1890s, nostalgic irony for the 1930s, carnival slapstick for the 1960s), he manages, without any political simplifications, to bring the historical process palpably, and humanly, to life." Time Out
"A profound visual experience… a stunning film." K Macduffie, A Guide to Cuban Cinema