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Cria Cuervos (1977)

Director: Carlos Saura     Starring: Ana Torrent Geraldine Chaplin
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Learn more about Cria Cuervos:

Format: DVD
Sku: 204693265
UPC: 715515025225
UPC 14: 00715515025225
Category Keywords: Suspense  Theatrical Release  Thriller
See more in Foreign
A Film by Carlos Saura.
Carlos Saura's exquisite Cria Cuervos... heralded a turning point in Spain: Shot while General Franco was on his deathbed, the film melds the personal and the political in a portrait of the legacy of fascism and its effects on a middle-class family (the title derives from the Spanish proverb: "Raise ravens and they'll peck out your eyes"). Ana Torrent (the dark-eyed beauty from The Spirit of the Beehive) portrays the disturbed eight-year-old Ana, living in Madrid with her two sisters and mourning the death of her mother, whom she conjures as a ghost (played by an ethereal Geraldine Chaplin). Seamlessly shifting between fantasy and reality, the film subtly evokes both the complex feelings of childhood and the struggles of a nation emerging from the shadows.

" indelible, serenely hypnotic, and deeply affecting portrait of innocence, death, and grief...  Strictly Film School
"A movie of marvelous moments and superb performances.  The New York Times

Editor's Note
After doing several films with screenwriter Rafael Azcona (GARDEN OF DELIGHTS, MY COUSIN AGNELICA) Carlos Saura made CRIA! from his own script. He continued using actors in dual roles, allowing for easily shifting time frames and multiple points of view. In a dreamy opening scene, Ana (Ana Torrent), a wide-eyed child of about ten, comes down the stairs and sees a half-dressed woman run from her father's room. She quietly and without emotion goes into the room where her father lies dead on the bed and removes a half-full glass of milk. In the kitchen, as she washes out the glass, her mother (Geraldine Chaplin) enters and scolds her for being up so late. But her Mother, we learn later, died earlier, and Ana blamed her father for it and put poison in his milk. When Ana is alone her mother appears to her again, but this time she looks right in the camera and explains that she's Ana, now age 29. Some of what came before was a flashback from her adult perspective. With Chaplin playing both parts, the film shifts between the story of Ana and her mother, and Ana's life as an adult, until what actually happened the night her father died is completely revealed. CRIA! is the most complex and ambitious of the many films that Saura and Chaplin made together.


Video Features DVD, Spanish

Technical Info

Release Information
Video Mfg Name Studio: Image Entertainment
Video Release Date Release Date: 8/14/2007
Video Play Time Running Time: 109 minutes
Video Release Year Original Release Date: 1977
Video CategoryId Catalog ID: 1701
Video UPC UPC: 00715515025225
Video Number of Discs Number of Discs: 1

Audio & Video
Video Original Language Original Language: Spanish
Video Audio Spec Available Audio Tracks: Spanish
Video Subtitle Available Subtitles: English
Video Color Spec Video: Color

Aspect Ratio
Video Aspect Ratio Anamorphic Widescreen  1.66:1

Cast & Crew

Video Cast Info Ana Torrent
Video Cast Info Florinda Chico
Video Cast Info Geraldine Chaplin
Video Cast Info Monica Randall
Video Cast Info Carlos Saura - Director
Video Cast Info Carlos Saura - Writer
Video Cast Info Carlos Saura - Producer
Video Cast Info Federico Mompou - Original Music By
Video Cast Info Pablo Gonzalez del Amo - Editor
Video Cast Info Rafael Palmero - Production Designer
Video Cast Info Teodoro Escamilla - Cinematographer


Nominee (1978)
   Video Award Name Golden Globe, Cria Cuervos..., Best Foreign Film

Winner (1976)
   Video Award Name Cannes Film Festival, Carlos Saura, Grand Prize of the Jury

Nominee (1976)
   Video Award Name Cannes Film Festival, Carlos Saura, Golden Palm

Professional Reviews

New York Times
"...Beautifully acted, haunting....A movie of marvelous moments and two superb performances..." 05/19/1977 p.C20

Sight and Sound
"One of the most important films in Saura's long career, CRIA CUERVOS powerfully conjures the commingling of past and present, fantasy and memory." 12/01/2007 p.105

Total Film
4 stars out of 5 -- "A richly shot, impressively acted film containing a powerful, bleak vision of both childhood and a repressive adult world." 06/01/2011

Strictly Film School 8 of 10
Carlos Saura presents an indelible, serenely hypnotic, and deeply affecting portrait of innocence, death, and grief in "Cria Cuervos". The title of the film refers to a Spanish proverb, "Raise ravens, and they will pluck out your eyes", and alludes to the children's irrational compulsion for vengeance and self-destruction: Ana's innate wish for her father's death; her fascination with a mysterious jar discarded by her mother; the children's resurrection prayer after playing hide-and-seek; Irene's kidnapping nightmare. By juxtaposing low angle medium shots that represent the children's perspective with fluid crane shots that reflect a birdseye point view, Saura visually emphasizes the incongruous union of the children's naivete with an ominous sense of instinctive cruelty. Inevitably, the fusion of haunted past and indeterminate present, like the coexistence of innocuous wish and intentional malice, becomes the tragic and unresolved legacy of a lost and misguided childhood.

Product Attributes

Product attributeActor:   Saura,Carlos
Product attributeMusic Format:   DVD
Product attributeVideo Format:   DVD
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