Aita (image 1)

An exquisitely high-art variation on the haunted-house movie.

Neil Young, Hollywood Reporter

Screened as part of NZIFF 2011

Aita 2010

Directed by José María de Orbe

Light and shadows in a crumbling mansion in the Basque countryside are the central players in this exquisite, painterly study of the passage of time. “An exquisitely high-art variation on the haunted-house movie.” — Hollywood Reporter

Spain In Basque and Spanish with English subtitles
85 minutes

Producer

Luis Miñarro

Screenplay

José María de Orbe
,
Daniel V. Villamediana

Photography

Jimmy Gimferrer

Editor

Cristóbal Fernández

With

Luis Pescador
,
Mikel Goenaga

Festivals

San Sebastián, London 2010; Rotterdam 2011

Elsewhere

‘History is slow, life is fast’ in this ancient place once traversed by pilgrims on the Way of Saint James. The building’s elderly caretaker and his friend, a priest, playfully ponder mortality while planes of light shimmer and the darkness reverberates with flickering images from bygone eras. Past momentarily haunts the present as images appear on a grainy wall-screen, as though emanating from the edifice’s very stones. Dilapidated splendour and illustrious heritage don’t beguile every visitor: young thieves ransack the place, destructively impervious to the radiance of shadows. — SR

“Its colorwork is as minute as the range of grey is meticulous and infinite, deep rubies popping out of a corner illuminated by a window and the whispered shock of shadowy green against the flat modernist palette produced from the combination of the old opulence and the current decay.” — Daniel Kasman, Mubi.com