La casa de los millones (Argentina, 1942) & La dama duende (Argentina, 1945)

Saturday, November 18, 2017
3:00 pm - 6:15 pm, UCLA Hammer Museum - Billy Wilder Theater

Recuerdos de un cine en espaƱol: Latin American Cinema in Los Angeles

See below for additional information.

Admission

A special pass grants access to all screenings in this series!

Advance tickets for individual screenings are available online for $10.

Tickets are also available at the Billy Wilder Theater box office beginning one hour before showtime: $9, general admission; free to all UCLA students with valid ID; $8, other students, seniors and UCLA Alumni Association members with ID.

Contact

Film and Television Archive
(310) 206-8013
archive@cinema.ucla.edu

Website

https://www.cinema.ucla.edu/events/latinamericanfilm

Additional Information

La casa de los millones (Argentina, 1942) directed Luis Bayón Herrera. Doña Fulgencia Codina (Olinda Bozán), an ill-tempered nouveau riche widow so mistreats her servants that only two are left, the long-suffering butler (Héctor Quintanilla) and a new hire, the wide-eyed but resourceful Fortunato Rico (Luis Sandrini). Her greedy family wants to declare her insane but Fortunato, literally and figuratively, turns the tables upside down in the mansion. A vehicle for the two popular leads, this light-hearted comedy is built around the malapropisms, puns, social commentary and slapstick of Olinda Bozán—a Hispanic Marie Dressler—and Luis Sandrini—Argentina’s version of Chaplin. Writer-director Luis Bayón Herrera had cut his teeth in the French-style revue theater of Buenos Aires, witty and risqué, and began his film career writing Carlos Gardel’s Luces de Buenos Aires (1931). Bayon Herrera’s knack was for quickly made, fast-paced comedies like La casa de los millones (1942) and its follow up La danza de la fortuna (1944).

Followed by La dama duende (Argentina, 1945) directed by Luis Saslavsky. The young widow of the viceroy of Peru, facing the dismal prospect of either a convent or a marriage of convenience, sets out to conquer a handsome officer, pretending she’s a duende, a ghost. Voted the best Argentine film of 1945, La dama duende is a beautifully crafted comedy of errors, based on the 17th-century play by Pedro Calderón de la Barca. The most ambitious production of Estudios San Miguel, it was brought to the screen mostly by Spaniards exiled in Argentina as a result of the Civil War: the literary original was lightened up and set a century later by writers María Teresa León and Rafael Alberti, while designer Gori Muñoz recreated Goya tableaux, elegantly captured by the cinematography of José María Beltrán. Director Luis Saslavsky’s signature style may seem to sacrifice substance to aesthetics, but perhaps the same could be said of Pedro Almodóvar, the great stylist of Spanish cinema.

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