- Los Otros
- The others (2001)One of the most phenomenal successes in Spanish cinema, The Others was shot in English, starring Nicole Kidman with Tom Cruise as producer (it was their last collaboration before their divorce). The stars' interest in the talented Alejandro Amenábar dates back to Abre los ojos (Open Your Eyes, 1997), Amenábar's previous film, which Cruise bought for a Hollywood adaptation. Although this interest attracted funding from the Weinstein brothers and other American producers, Los otros remained a largely Spanish production, with substantial input from director José Luis Cuerda and Fernando Bovaira. Amenábar's script included certain themes from Henry James' gothic novel The Turn of the Screw and a plot twist similar to that in M. Night Shyamalan's The Sixth Sense (1999), which opened as Amenábar's film was in postproduction and caused some concern among the filmmakers.The action is set in a big isolated mansion in the Jersey countryside in the years following World War I, where a young mother (Kidman in a strong performance) lives with her two children Anne (Alakina Mann) and Nicholas (James Bentley), who are photosensitive and cannot stand strong light for very long. As a consequence, rooms must be darkened and doors closed all the time. This device contributed to a particular emphasis on the use of light in the film, reflected in Javier Aguirresarobe's inventive cinematography based largely on natural sources.The arrival of a mysterious group of servants coincides with strange noises in the house and the suspicion that things may not be as they seem. The children themselves start seeing ghosts, who seem malignant and threaten their lives by opening curtains and doors.The film made almost $207 million worldwide, soon becoming the highest-grossing Spanish film ever. It was particularly successful in the United States, where its release coincided with the Kidman-Cruise divorce and where it stayed fourth in box-office income for several weeks. The Others was the first film to win the Goya for best Spanish film with no Spanish spoken, and it became a watershed in the internationalization of the Spanish film industry, particularly in the areas of fantasy and horror.
Historical dictionary of Spanish cinema. Alberto Mira. 2010.