Film Spanish Culture and News

Do Not See: The Oxford Murders

We were really looking forward to this film. It’s set in the town I grew up in (there’s a clue in the title), has a pretty good cast (John Hurt, Elijah Wood, Leonor Watling) and is directed by Alex de la Iglesia, who so perfectly depicted the horrors of living in a Madrid apartment building in La Comunidad.

So, what went wrong? Here are the top 3 disasters:

  • With the exception of John Hurt, who can probably act his way out of the worst script on earth, all of the performances were painfully flat.
  • The script is almost certainly to blame for this. I suspect it started out in Spanish… and that Google Translator may have come up with the final English version.
  • We weren’t allowed to work a thing out for ourselves. Every painful twist in the plot (people die, mathematical series may hold the key) had to be deliberately explained.

With the exception of young men who probably feel that seeing Leonor Watling in nothing but a kitchen apron is worth the price of admission alone (and Alex de la Iglesia may have been banking on this), there really is nothing to recommend this film at all. What a shame. It had all the makings of the kind of blockbuster that could have added a little shine to Spain’s spiraling film industry.

(God it’s hard writing film reviews at midnight on a Sunday night… I wish South of Watford had seen it first then I could have just linked to one of his great reviews instead! Still, I hope you get the message. The film was pretty crap. Apart from the apron scene. But don’t tell Marina I said that.)

What’s your all-time favourite, or worst, film from Spain?