Cinema Lumiere - Sala Scorsese > 09:30


Humberto Solás
Introduced by

Cecilia Cenciarelli e Luciano Castillo (ICAIC)


Thursday 29/06/2017


Original version with subtitles


Film Notes


The restoration of Lucía used of the original camera and sound negative and a third generation dupe negative preserved at the ICAIC. Due to advanced vinegar syndrome large portions of 5 (out of 18) reels of the negative could not be used. These sections were replaced with a second generation duplicate preserved by the Bundesarchiv since the film had been distributed in East Germany in the late 1960s. Lucía was shot on two different stocks – Orwo and Ilford – that were graded according to the different style, tone and narrative of each episode. The testimonies of Raúl Rodriguez and Carlos Bequet provided precious information for the colour grading, which used as a reference a vintage print preserved at the BFI – National Archive.


ICAIC (Instituto Cubano del Arte e Industria Cinematográficos) was born out of the victory of the Revolution. Those of us who were about to attempt to found a national film industry from scratch faced a set of problems that we had to resolve immediately. Our problem was a basic cultural dichotomy, as in Lenin’s thesis on national cultures. We had an elitist cultural tradition that represented the interests of the dominant class, and a more clandestine culture that had already received wide exposure: however, at some point, all artistic expression started to be converted into products of a consumer-oriented culture.

Because the elitist and the popular were so intimately tied, because petit bourgeois consciousness and influences from Europe and North America were so dominant, our general cultural panorama at the time of the Revolution was in fact a pretty desolate one. This was during the Sixties, when the most important film movement was the French New Wave. Films like Alain Resnais’ Hiroshima mon amour (1959) or Michelangelo Antonioni’s L’avventura (1960) marked most of the subsequent decade. These influences alienated us from our indigenous cultural forms and from a more serious search for a kind of cultural expression consistent with national life and with the explosive dynamism of the Revolution. Yet this was a path we clearly had to travel. Anyone who picks up the tools of artistic activity for the first time is going to be vulnerable to outside influences.

With Lucía, I wanted to view our history in phases, to show how apparent frustrations and setbacks – such as the decade of the Thirties led us to a higher stage of national life. Whenever you make a historical film, whether it’s set two decades or two centuries ago, you are referring to the present.

Lucía is not a film about women, it’s a film about society. But within society, I chose the most vulnerable character, the one who is more transcendentally affected at any given moment by contradictions and change.

Humberto Solás, in Cinema and Social Change in Latin America. Conversations with Filmmakers, edited by Julianne Burton, University of Texas Press, Austin 1986

Cast and Credits

Scen.: Humberto Solás, Julio García Espinosa, Nelson Rodríguez. F.: Jorge Herrera. Scgf.: Pedro García Espinosa, Roberto Miqueli. Mus.: Leo Brouwer, Joseíto Fernández. Int.: Raquel Revuelta (Lucía nel 1895), Eduardo Moure (Rafael), Idalia Anreus (Fernandina), Eslinda Núñez (Lucía nel 1933), Ramón Brito (Aldo), Flora Lautén (Flora), Adela Legrá (Lucía dopo la Rivoluzione), Adolfo Llauradó (Tomás), Teté Vergara (Angelina). Prod.: Raúl Canosa, Camilo Vives per ICAIC. DCP. D.: 160’. Bn