Documentary / History
Documentary / History
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Somewhere on the high plains of La Mancha in Spain resides a village that carries the name of its creator, Francisco Franco. The translation for the village's name Llanos del Caudillo is The High Plains of the Caudillo. Caudillo is the equivalent to the German Fuehrer (Hitler) or the Italian Duce (Mussolini). Llanos del Caudillo was one of over 300 settlement villages built during the dictatorship of General Franco between 1939 and 1975. The ideological goal of these communities was to create the new fascist man. "Franco's Settlers" is a review of the legacy and prevalence, apparent or hidden, of Francisco Franco's figure, a glance at the past in order to find the key to the present and to understand a world where the figure of the dictator persists, even nowadays. Contrary to some other films that deal with Spanish history and which usually speak from the victim's perspective, in "Franco's Settlers" Palacios and Post succeed in delivering a more complete overall picture of the Spanish dictatorship (1936-1977). Especially remarkable are two things: First the film lets protagonists who openly admire the dictator Franco speak. These subjects in power during those years were high in the fascist hierarchy, from which they still massively benefit. Secondly the film paints a precise picture of what it meant to live under the dictatorship. It is those little stories about harassment and abuse which reveal an entire system of a corrupt society. Rightly the film has been compared to the literary work by Rafael Chirbes (The Long March, The Fall of Madrid) and the filmic examinations by Claude Lanzmann (Shoa) and Eberhard Fechner (The Trial). As those works did, "Franco's Settlers" differentiates itself favorably in aesthetic and content from current more sensation ridden and, at times, cheesy films by using a calm rhythm and cadence, which could be described as "discreetly haunting". Therefore the film becomes timeless and simultaneously highly topical.—play loud! productions
Uploaded by: FREEMAN
March 12, 2023 at 04:11 AM
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Great and methodical work of Lucia and Dietmar. As a citizen of Llanos has been a pleasure to follow the work they have done, the treatment given to the information collected and the delicacy with which they have treat us. The result of their work is a great story that is beyond of the town limits and makes us reflect on the Spanish transition to democracy and its unexplained gaps and shortcomings. They are brave to talk about an issue inexplicably still taboo in Spain. This can be seen clearly by observing the different interviews. It would be advisable to discuss the Spanish we could open our recent history, I hope this documentary will help it.
Something is rotten in the state of Spain
"Spain is different" was Franco's Spain touristic slogan in the 60s. And it is indeed. This brilliantly researched work shows us an example of Spain's peculiarity. With their very relevant selection of archival footage, interviews and printed materials, the authors bring us into a coherently narrated time-travel to the hardest times of post-war Spain while, at the same time, we get through the interposed interviews the contradicting perspectives that some of the still living protagonists have nowadays. The documentary presents the opinions not only of the citizens of Llanos, but also of a very prominent francoist ministry and of socialist ex prime minister Felipe González, the leader of post-francoist Spain in the 80s and early 90s. The documentary "Los colonos del Caudillo" is a very important document for those interested in understanding the very complex relationship of Spain with its fascist past and the present difficulties in dealing with it and repairing its victims.