News  ·  11 | 08 | 2023

El corazón y la espada

Wild adventures in Moorish Spain involving gold, the elixir of life, plenty of sword-fighting, some fisticuffs, and longing glances galore. 'Nuff said.

© 3-D Film Archive

In 1953, between an English noir and an American western, Cesar Romero – American actor of Cuban and Spanish origin, and later the beloved Joker in the 1966  television Batman starring Adam West – enjoyed acting, in the role of the adventurer Don Pedro de Rivera, in an amused and funny Mexican swashbuckler, set in Spain in the final stages of the Moorish period. Duels, elixirs of life, gold, hand-to-hand combat, the dual presence of two national divas such as Rebeca Iturbide (Princess Esme) and Katy Jurado (Lolita), without forgetting Tito Junco (one of the faces of The Exterminating Angel of  Buñuel) in the role of the explorer Ponce de León: these are the main ingredients of El corazón y la espada, an authentic blockbuster for the joint direction of the American, Edward Dein (also one of the scriptwriters together with his wife Mildred) and the Mexican Carlos Véjar Jr. A real event for the amazing, very popular Retrospective of this edition of the Festival, dedicated to the identities and facets of that popular cinema made in the south of the United States between 1940 and 1969, which influenced today's filmmakers such as Guillermo del Toro. This is, in fact, the first 3D feature film ever produced in Mexico, which the Locarno public will be able to appreciate in stereoscopy with a vintage look – with the inevitable glasses – thanks to the priceless new restoration by the 3-D Film Archive, an organization founded in 1990 by the expert Bob Furmanek and specialized in the preservation of films of the so-called golden age of 3D,  from 1922 to 1955 (it was in 1953, the year of the film's release, that the commercial decline of three-dimensional projections in the United States began, since the technology of the time imposed the simultaneous use of two copies, which had to remain perfectly identical throughout the exposure of the single title). A show is guaranteed and is shown, exceptionally, in Room 1 of the PalaCinema instead of the GranRex. The historic venue of the Retrospective will instead be used for the final event of the festival, immediately after the 3D entertainment, with the screening  of El as negro by René Cardona, a piece of pulp which talks of criminals who want to take possession of a miraculous vaccine. The ideal double for the penultimate day of the Festival.


Max Borg