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Carol's Journey
Carol's Journey
Actors: María Barranco, Rosa María Sardà, Álvaro de Luna, Carmelo Gómez, Alberto Jiménez
Director: Imanol Uribe
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama, Kids & Family
NR     2005     1hr 40min

Carol, a Spanish-American twelve year old girl brought up in New York, travels with her mother to Spain for the first time in the turbulent spring of 1938, to meet her mother's family. Separated from her father, a pilot in...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: María Barranco, Rosa María Sardà, Álvaro de Luna, Carmelo Gómez, Alberto Jiménez
Director: Imanol Uribe
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama, Kids & Family
Sub-Genres: Indie & Art House, Coming of Age, Family Life, Kids & Family
Studio: Film Movement
Format: DVD - Color - Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 01/01/2005
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/2002
Release Year: 2005
Run Time: 1hr 40min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 10
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: Spanish
Subtitles: English

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Movie Reviews

Carol's Journey
kayt | usa | 12/03/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)

"This is the story of Carol, a spanish-american girl, who travels to visit her mother's family in Spain during the Spanish Civil War. Her father is fighting in the International Brigade to aid the Republicans. Carol is naturally rebellious and resists her new surroundings at first. Eventually she finds her own path in a new culture and among family and friends.
This isn't the first time a coming of age story has been made, but this movie has an interesting twist with the setting in Spain during the civil war. You catch glimpses of how the war affected the lives of everyday people. The movie is well made with wonderful scenery. It is of course in spainsh with english subtitles, but if you are a lover of languages you can appreciate some of the struggles that Carol goes through adapting to her (semi)new language. If you've ever lived outside of your own culture you'll also appreciate this movie.
It left me hanging...
CGScammell | Southern Arizona | 05/24/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Although this movie had a beautiful backdrop of Spanish mountains and lush country settings, there were a few questions I had after seeing this movie. There was an old feud between Carol's mother and Carol's aunt that was never explained. Also, the Grandpa seemed unwilling to move from his home near his friends, the spas and the domino games; there had to be a bigger reason why he initially didn't want to leave his estate to be with Carol.

The little girl playing Carol was a beautiful young actress who gave the movie fresh air. Her innocence of her surroundings, her tolerance of diversity and her persistence to do things her way and maintain peace in her surroundings were plusses that got the villagers together in the end.

Carol faced not only the stigma of being a rich New York American, but a city girl AND a Protestant in a very Catholic Old-World country. These clashes along with the internal struggle of the Spaniards in the mid 1930s added to the tension of peoples' perceptions of outsiders and was well represented in this movie.

One thing I was hoping more of was a bit more coverage of the Civil War. For the villagers the war was about drunk soldiers who drive around the area after dark, pick up people for a drive in the country and then ends with a bullet or two in the back of the head. It's something that happens to other people, not themselves, and therefore isn't such an important issue. Except that Carol's Dad was an American...

On a technical note, I found the soundtrack a bit too loud for the movie. When I turned up the TV loud enough to hear the peoples' voices, the music afterwards was ear-drenchingly loud."
War And Other Inequalities As Seen Through A Child's Eyes
Grady Harp | Los Angeles, CA United States | 09/10/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Some unsuspecting films carry a message that resonates in the hours and days after viewing. Such is the case for CAROL'S JOURNEY (EL VIAJE DE CAROL), a beautifully crafted 2002 film from Spain based on the novel 'A boca de noche' by Ángel García Roldán who also adapted the book as a screenplay. War and its consequences are not new subject matter for films, but when that war theme plays in the background as a subtle driving force to develop characters (especially children) who must face adult life influenced by the games of adults, the result is a different and more tender examination of the coming of age film genre.

Carol (Clara Lago) is a 12-year-old Spanish American youngster from New York who with her critically ill mother Aurora (María Barranco) returns to her mother's home in 1938 at the height of the Spanish Civil War, a home that has been left deserted by her father Don Amalio (Álvaro de Luna) since his wife's death. Carol's father Robert (Ben Temple) is a fighter pilot who has sided with the Republicans against Franco and is rarely with his family. Aurora has a past: she left her lover Alfonso (Alberto Jiménez) to marry Robert, and Alfonso in turn married Aurora's cold sister Dolores (Lucina Gil). Carol is an independent girl who remains aloof to all but her grandfather Don Amalio until she meets others her age but not of her 'class': Tomiche (Juan José Ballesta) and his two friends at first resent Carol, but as events develop Carol and Tomiche are bonded by what feels like the first awakenings of love. When Aurora dies of her illness, Carol must live with Alfonso and Dolores and their daughter Blanca (Luna McGill), yet turns to her grandfather for support and to her mother's best friend and teacher Maruja (the always radiant Rosa Maria Sardà) to understand the disparity between classes and the senseless war that keeps her beloved father from her side. Through a series of incidents Carol and Tomiche learn the rigors of becoming adults, facing more traumas in a brief period of the war than most of us experience in a lifetime. The ending, though sad, is uplifting as Carol's journey to maturity is complete.

The film is shot in Galicia and Portugal and contains some extraordinarily beautiful settings captured with gentle sensitive lighting by cinematographer Gonzalo F. Berridi and enhanced by the musical score by Bingen Mendizábal. Director Imanol Uribe understands the fine line separating pathos from bathos, and in electing to concentrate the story on the children involved, he makes an even stronger statement about the futility and cruelty of war. The cast is exceptional: the stars clearly are young Clara Lago and Juan José Ballesta, but they are supported by the fine veteran actors in the adult roles. This is a visually stunning work with a lasting message and should find a much larger audience than it has to this date. Grady Harp, September 07
Maria Garcia | San Diego California | 08/07/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This is a great movie. I have watched it twice and enjoyed watching it the second time as first time and I will watch it again. Even though I dont like watching the same movie twice. In this movie, If you are one of those persons that left your hometown when you were young and came back after years, you will feel identified with the movie.
As a hispanic person myself being born in a small place where children were free to play but that, at same time people were scared from police instead of feeling secured and protected by them, I myself, when watched this movie, traveled through time and, I understood that, whoever wrote this story, fullfilled the purpose to show how people feel in countries like these and how; people may feel during war times where soldiers do whatever they want without respecting you as a human being.
I was also impressed how the movie has strong and weak characters, good and bad people as in every family, and every town.
The innocent and disinterested friendship of the main characters is what prevails in this story, and wins the heart of whoever watches this movie."