Achero Mañas

Dynamic, cleverly constructed portrait of an idealistic Spanish street theatre group, which wrestles with conflicts as soon as money is involved. In a mixture of fiction and documentary, real actors look back from the future.

In Noviembre, a group of elderly actors reflects sometime in the future on camera about their youth in the 1990s. Years they remember as being extremely individualistic and materialistic. Nothing was for free. Together, they tell the story of their friend Alfredo, wayward, inspired, idealistic and creative. Alfredo soon had enough of drama school in Madrid, being dissatisfied with the pedantic tone. He angrily decided to show the kind of theatre he wanted to make in the street. He collected a group of kindred spirits around him and formed the theatre group 'Noviembre'. The manifesto they made also ruled that they should not accept any money. Alongside this clever construction, through which it is possible to take a critical look at our recent past from the future, the power of Noviembre is also to be found in the conviction with which the street theatre is made. Mañas films with great flair the way the young people turn metros and shopping streets into a playground for their acts. The interaction with the audience -and also rapidly with the police -means their pieces increasingly become politically committed. But when money comes to play a role, tensions rise within the group. Mañas' second film is loosely based on the Spanish Theatre group El Piojo Picón, that was active in the years of transition after Franco. The elderly actors looking back are largely members of this group.

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