Jolly Cinema > 18:00


Alberto 'Tito' Gout
Introduced by

Daniela Michel


Tuesday 27/06/2017


Original version with subtitles


Film Notes

A fascinating hybrid genre, the rumbera film had manifold and disparate influences, including (but not limited to) the extravagant studio musicals produced by Hollywood in the 1930s, the moody femmes fatales of film noir – from both Mexico and Hollywood in the ’40s – and the afro-beats of Cuban rumba music, which was wildly popular in Mexico and Latin American for most of the first half of the 20th Century. The rumbera dancer, epitomized in this film by the sensual Cuban actress and dancer Ninón Sevilla, had her origins in the popular Mexican vedettes (vaudeville and burlesque dances), but the genre came to a peak during the Alemán administration (1946-52), which saw a rapid industrial and urban growth that brought with it a boom in nightlife and cabaret culture.
Aventurera was director Alberto Gout’s fourteenth feature film, commissioned by production company Cinematográfica Calderón as a vehicle to bring Sevilla to super-stardom. Featuring photography by the extraordinary Canadian-born Mexican cinematographer Alex Phillips, it is the story of Elena, an upper middle-class woman whose sheltered life is turned upside down when her mother abandons the family and her father commits suicide. Elena’s descent into a seedy nightlife offers Gout a way to expose certain elements of corruption in Mexican society, but the film also sticks to the conventions of the genre, with a fast-paced plot, extravagant musical and dance numbers (choreographed by Sevilla herself), and a surrealism that places it in the realm of fantasy. However, while it ostensibly follows the ‘fallen woman’ narrative typical of the rumbera film – the female protagonist who is forced to suffer for her sexuality – Aventurera is unabashed in its fetishistic celebration of the eroticism of its star and, unusually for both the genre and for the (cinema) culture of the time, it allows the fallen woman to achieve a happy ending with the man she loves.

Daniela Michel e Chlöe Roddick

Cast and Credits

Sog.: Álvaro Custodio. Scen.: Álvaro Custodio, Carlos Sampelayo, Alberto ‘Tito’ Gout. F.: Alex Phillips Jr. M.: Alfredo Rosas Priego. Scgf.: Manuel Fontanals. Mus.: Antonio Díaz Conde. Int.: Ninón Sevilla (Elena Tejero/Elena Montez), Tito Junco (Lucio Sáenz), Andrea Palma (Rosaura de Cervera), Rubén Rojo (Mario Cervera), Miguel Inclán (Rengo), Jorge Mondragón (Pacomio Rodriguez), Maruja Grifell (Consuelo Tejero), Luis López Somoza (Ricardo Cerver). Prod.: Pedro A. Calderón, Guillermo Calderón per Producciones Calderón. DCP. D.: 102’. Bn.