×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

It

Verbal and visual gags energetically chase each other around to pleasurable, undemanding effect in Fernando Colomo's compactly formed, slick sex-and-technology comedy, "It."

With:
Domingo - Daniel Guzman Elizabeth - Diana Galvez Tinin - Antonio Molero Miguel Angel - Javier Camara Marcial - Saturnino Garcia Carmona - Paco Maestre

Verbal and visual gags energetically chase each other around to pleasurable, undemanding effect in Fernando Colomo’s compactly formed, slick sex-and-technology comedy, “It.” A modest budget and tight shooting schedule barely show, and the zestful perfs and well-chiseled, on-the-pulse script — mixing a teenage love story with some witty observations on TV culture — will guarantee a warm Spanish reception, with offshore distribution a distinct likelihood if the film’s easy-to-swallow approach is correctly packaged.

Along with 1994’s “Allegro ma non troppo,” pic reps Colomo’s best ’90s work, and shows a more subtle contempo alertness than is often found in Spanish comedy. Originally made for TV in 1994, pic won a prize at that year’s Munich festival, which led to its home theatrical release.

“It” is sex. Slightly nerdy 18-year-old Domingo (Daniel Guzman) is obsessed with losing his virginity, but his night-shift job in a department store means he can never meet girls. Urged on by heart-of-gold rogue sidekick Tinin (vibrant newcomer Antonio Molero), he takes to borrowing clothes from the store to achieve the necessary elegance to lose his virginity. In a stylish bar, he meets diplomat’s daughter Elizabeth (Diana Galvez, who tragically died two years ago, and to whom pic is dedicated). Domingo tells fibs, transforming himself into “Luis Carlos,” and continues to borrow from the department store.

So far, pic is pleasant enough. It’s when we realize that “Elizabeth” — whose real name is Isabel and whose father is actually a cop — is part of a TV reality show being filmed by hidden camera, with the aim that the two will get married on air, that pic shifts into a higher gear. Hysterical Carmona (Paco Maestre), Isabel’s ex-b.f., interrupts live on the scene to further thwart the program’s success, and the movie becomes a hall-of-mirrors farce.

The technically accomplished Colomo demonstrates flair in combining video and “real” images, and in cutting between studio scenes with larger-than-life TV director Miguel Angel (Javier Camara) and the developing relationship of the young couple, who are falling in love.

The running gags (including a condom that never gets used) generally work, and dialogue manages moments of real wit. Apart from the penultimate scenes, in which TV’s wrists are roundly slapped for pursuing the ratings war at all costs, Colomo’s satire is typically soft-edged, with everything resolutely played for laughs. Any darker implications — such as the ways in which we mold ourselves according to the laws of TV — are safely sidestepped.

Though pic flags slightly in the final half-hour, overall pacing is excellent, with Molero in particular reaffirming helmer Colomo’s ability to get maximum audience appeal from young performers. Music by Julian Brenan has an aptly ironic flavor, and tech credits are up to scratch.

It

Spanish

Production: A Lider Films release (in Spain) of a Fernando Colomo/Aurum Producciones production, with the collaboration of Antena 3 TV. (International sales: Fernando Colomo, Madrid.) Produced by Beatriz de la Gandara. Directed by Fernando Colomo. Screenplay, Jose Angel Esteban, Carlos Lopez.

Crew: Camera (color), Javier Salmones; editor, Miguel Angel Santamaria; music, Julian Brenan; art direction, Vicente Ruiz; sound (Dolby), Julio Recuero. Reviewed at Acteon Cinema, Madrid, June 26, 1997. Running time: 110 MIN.

With: Domingo - Daniel Guzman Elizabeth - Diana Galvez Tinin - Antonio Molero Miguel Angel - Javier Camara Marcial - Saturnino Garcia Carmona - Paco Maestre

More Film

  • Hugh Jackman Sings Happy Birthday to

    Hugh Jackman Leads Massive One-Man Show Crowd in 'Happy Birthday' for Ian McKellen

    Hugh Jackman may have had to skip Ian McKellen’s birthday party to perform his one-man show, “The Man, The Music, The Show,” but that didn’t mean he couldn’t celebrate his “X-Men” co-star’s 80th. Jackman took a moment at the Manchester Arena Saturday to lead the sold-out audience — some 50,000 strong — in a rendition [...]

  • Netflix, Shmetflix: At Cannes 2019, the

    Netflix, Shmetflix: At Cannes 2019, the Movies Needed Every Inch of the Big Screen

    In the May 24 edition of The New York Times, there was a column by Timothy Egan, entitled “The Comeback of the Century: Why the Book Endures, Even in an Era of Disposable Digital Culture,” that celebrated those things that come between two hard covers as a larger phenomenon than mere nostalgia. The column keyed [...]

  • Aladdin

    'Aladdin' Dominates International Box Office With $121 Million

    Disney’s “Aladdin” is showing plenty of worldwide drawing power with $121 million overseas for the weekend, opening in first place in nearly all international markets. The reboot of the 1992 animated classic has received strong family attendance with a significant gain on Saturday and Sunday. China leads the way with an estimated $18.7 million for [...]

  • Aladdin

    Box Office: 'Aladdin' Taking Flight With $105 Million in North America

    Disney’s live-action “Aladdin” is flying high with an estimated $105 million in North America during the four-day Memorial Day holiday weekend. It’s the sixth-highest Memorial Day weekend total ever, topping the 2011 mark of $103.4 million for “The Hangover Part II.” The top total came in 2007, when “Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End” [...]

  • Agustina San Martin Talks Cannes Special

    Agustina San Martin Talks Cannes Special Mention Winner ‘Monster God’

    CANNES – An exploration of the ramifications of God, “Monster God,” from Argentina’s Agustina San Martín, took a Special Mention – an effective runner’s up prize – on Saturday night at this year’s Cannes Film Festival short film competition. It’s not difficult to see why, especially when jury president Claire Denis own films’ power resists [...]

  • Atlantics

    Netflix Snags Worldwide Rights to Cannes Winners 'Atlantics,' 'I Lost My Body'

    Mati Diop’s feature directorial debut “Atlantics” and Jérémy Clapin’s animated favorite “I Lost My Body” have both been acquired by Netflix following wins at Cannes Film Festival. “Atlantics” was awarded the grand prix while “I Lost My Body” was voted the best film at the independent International Critics Week. The deals are for worldwide rights [...]

  • Stan Lee, left, and Keya Morgan

    Stan Lee's Former Business Manager Arrested on Elder Abuse Charges

    Stan Lee’s former business manager, Keya Morgan, was arrested in Arizona Saturday morning on an outstanding warrant from the Los Angeles Police Department. The LAPD’s Mike Lopez confirmed that the arrest warrant was for the following charges: one count of false imprisonment – elder adult; three counts of grand theft from elder or dependent adult, [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content