Victor Aris puts the Cannes Film Festival at your feet with the phrase “Close your eyes”

Finally Victor Eric traveled to the south, that mythical region that he could not reach in his days because of his second feature film, the South (1983), left unfinished due to budget problems; immersed in his cinematic world Death and the compassthe short story by Jorge Luis Borges that he was about to adapt for television before the job went to Carlos Saura; And make reality – at least in part – his version of Shanghai Huntthis project that producer Andrés Vicente Gómez took over at the end of the 1990s.close your eyeswhich is the fourth feature film in his career, and the first he has directed in over three decades, and a return to it Cannes Film Festival Since what quince sun (1992) won the Jury Prize, which is for the Biscayan director not only his most personal work but something akin to Exorcism, A way to settle scores with his career and perhaps be at peace with himself.

Considering the very intimate relationship that the film maintains with its author, and the clarity with which he shows it, Erice’s decision not to travel to the competition to present her was made especially sad.. He took it based on very specific reasons and maybe one day he will reveal it, but in the meantime it is inevitable to assume that it is related to the way the competition organization had to release the film worldwide It is incomprehensible that she is not among the candidates for the Palme d’Or.; His absence prevented him from seeing the euphoric reactions he had himself induced.

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It is this autobiographical and metatextual dimension that largely gives the film its captivating and hypnotic power. which, despite maintaining warm connections with the previous directors, differs from them in one crucial aspect. Part of what allowed Iris to be recognized as one of the most eloquent of the visual poets after the premiere of what is still one of his masterpieces, cell spirit (1973) and the Southis the subtlety with which he uses celluloid to explore his fascination with the pictorial qualities of light, his unique talent for composing shots, His ability to create images that emit both touch and temperature. close your eyes It lacks those qualities.

The film tells the story of the director (Manolo Solo), who left an unfinished film some time ago due to the unexplained disappearance of its lead actor (José Coronado).As a result, he decided to retire from cinema – as Eris almost – to move to Andalusia – as we say, Eris could not do -; Two decades later, the mystery regains steam when a TV show takes an interest in the case, and its broadcast leads to an unrelated detective conspiracy investigation of what, how, and why happened.

As he relives his friend’s memories, he gradually begins to come to terms with his memories. His return to the past, then, is a process of reconciliation, like the one the girl from cell spirit While searching for Frankenstein’s monster or the monster the protagonist has done the South On his quest to find his father. As in his previous films, the labyrinth of memory is one of the primary themes in close your eyes.

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The other, more directly and overwhelmingly than ever before in Eris’ work, is the power of cinema. Its 170 minutes long includes a lament on the medium’s aging process, Visual allusions to celluloid, giant rooms and projectors, and musical references to classic titles – the version sung by Solo My gun, my pony and methe most famous tune Bravo River (1959) – and successive arguments in defense of the ability novels must project onto the big screen to organize reality and mitigate its inherent chaos; To make us understand everything and freeze time. And all of this plays out with particular force in a final scene that, for Eris, is also a beautiful way to close the circle.

Yes there is cell spiritthe girl Anna keeps her eyes wide open when she spots the Beast sitting in the cinema seat, and now that image receives a wonderful version when, crushed in front of the screen, Coronado closes his image.

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