Despite being co-written by one of Spain’s finest scripters, Rafael Azcona, “The Green March” is more like a Hispanic “Privates on Parade,” with red faces, popping eyes and handlebar moustaches the order of the day. This high-kitsch take on the Spanish transition from dictatorship to democracy has decent perfs from a vintage cast, but the script is very ’60s, with appeal strictly limited to Spanish senior citizens.
Pic is set on a military base in the Sahara, 1975, when Gen. Franco is on his deathbed and the king of Morocco is pushing to occupy the western Sahara. A colonel (Alvaro de Luna) sees his authority disappear with the arrival of a traveling troupe led by Perales (Ricardo Palacios) and his wife, Gloria (’60s sex symbol Fedra Llorente). The colonel falls for Gloria, while his sidekick, Pecina (Pepon Nieto), gets it on with Gloria’s hippie daughter, Chichi (Inma del Moral). Cast breaks out into cheesy songs at random moments; and as Franco slowly dies, the colonel (and, metaphorically, Spain too) rediscovers his youth. Things marginally improve in the final reel as the political context comes to the fore.