Metro Weekly

THE SEA (El Mar)

Thursday, Oct. 24, 7 p.m.
Lincoln Theatre, $9


If brooding, grim art house cinema highlighted with violently drawn swaths of homoeroticism is the kind of thing that floats your boat, then dive into The Sea. Spanish director Agusti Villaronga makes grand, if obtuse, statements about youth, sexuality, faith, death and vengeance in a visually stunning recreation of mid-20th-century Majorca. There, childhood friends Ramallo (Roger Casamajor), Manuel (Bruno Bergonzini) and Francisca (Antonia Torrens) are reunited — a decade after their life-altering experiences in the Spanish Civil War — in a TB sanatorium where Francisca, now a nun, serves as a nurse and the young men are patients.

El Mar

Casamajor is mesmerizing as the cocksure Ramallo who thinks of little other than his own self-interest, and Bergonzini is similarly entrancing as the devout Manuel, constantly torturing himself over his homosexuality. You may wish, at times, for a more straightforward narrative approach. But the evocative power of The Sea balances out any sense of disorientation you’re bound to feel in such an out of the ordinary setting. — JP