You’re My Hero (Eres mi heroe)

Director: Antonio Cuadri

(2003. English subtitles. Colour. Dolby digital stereo. 103 mins.)

A pleasant enough coming-of-age tale, Antonio Cuadri’s You’re My Hero benefits enormously from being set during an exciting time, namely Spain’s late-’70s transition from dictatorship to democracy. Because of his father’s job, 12-year-old Ramon (Manuel Lozano) transfers from school to school, ending up in Seville in 1975 shortly before Franco’s death. Bullied by a gang of youths, the unhappy lad retreats into talking to Watercloud (Antonio Dechent), a comic-book red Indian character who becomes real and advises Ramon to stand up to the bullies. The unpretentious script avoids the laborious moralising and metaphors that Spanish political cinema is so fond of, keeping its focus firmly on characters rather than ideas. As Ramon, teenager Lozano (The Butterfly’s Tongue) appears in practically every scene and shoulders the responsibility well, his cheeky, wide-eyed features masking a multitude of insecurities.

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