Close Your Eyes (2023) Movie Script

Monsieur Franch is here.
Punctual, just the way I like it.
Show him in, Lin Yu.
Lin Yu, the tea, please.
I've ordered tea.
Would you rather something else?
- Something stronger, perhaps?
- No, tea is fine, thank you.
Did you have any issues
finding the place?
A little.
I was told... you didn't come by car.
No. I took the train.
I'm curious about something,
Monsieur Lvy.
That name, Triste Le Roy,
where does it come from?
I chose the name,
but I didn't invent it myself.
I found it in a story I read.
It was very interesting.
The story I mean.
Chess is a reflection of the world.
All my life I've been
a keen chess player.
And on the board,
the king,
don't ask me why,
has always seemed to me like
a sad piece in relation to the others.
Perhaps it's why I liked the name
so much when I first saw it.
Triste Le Roy.
The sad king.
Beautiful, isn't it?
So it's the name I gave this chateau.
I bought it many years ago,
on a whim.
I never actually
thought I would live here.
I was even about
to sell it at one point.
I'm glad I didn't.
Don't worry.
Of all the people
that have passed through my life,
I have only preserved Lin Yu.
He sees everything, hears everything.
but he will never say a word.
A wise man.
- Then we can start.
- Yes, yes.
Monsieur Franch,
I called you because
I would like you
to do something for me.
I want you to find someone.
And if I might ask, why me?
You know there are professionals...
who take care
of these kinds of matters.
Professionals are all very well for
solving certain kinds of problems,
the most obvious ones.
But when it's something more subtle,
let's say,
then they aren't much use at all.
For example,
they know nothing about
fighting for an ideal,
whereas you do.
That's why I have the feeling
I can trust you.
Well, that's not the only reason.
Money came in to it too.
I don't take these things lightly.
I did my research before calling you.
I know first-hand
that you saved
many of my people
from falling into the hands of the Gestapo,
by helping them cross the Pyrenees.
You're tired of fighting.
And you'd like to live a normal life.
Isn't that true?
Depends what you mean
by a normal life.
You and I may differ there.
I'm talking about
what the majority of people desire:
A job, a family, good health,
good friends...
Sounds familiar?
- Yes, of course but...
- Do you mean to say...
you've never had any of that?
I did,
but it lasted
a very short time.
Well, well,
would you believe it?
We have something in common.
Yes, you're tired.
And I don't care
if you want to admit it or not.
I can tell.
There's no need to be embarrassed.
You lost your war...
And General Franco
isn't going anywhere any time soon.
Yes, go ahead and smoke.
Actually, it's a good idea.
I think I'll join you.
I think breathing in some smoke
will do me good.
No, thank you.
I'm the only one
to smoke cigars in this house.
It would be a real pity to lose
such a pleasure.
It's my duty to not let that happen.
Let's get to the point.
Monsieur Franch,
if you accomplish
the mission I give you,
I am prepared
to help you rebuild your life.
You'll get back what you had and lost.
And above all,
you'll be doing a good deed.
You may even earn a spot in Heaven.
I think we'll leave the last one.
For another occasion.
Thank you, Lin Yu.
Don't try and play the tough guy
with me, Monsieur Franch.
Deep down,
all Anarchists are Christians.
They don't fool me. You know why?
Because I'm a Jew. Sephardic.
I was born in Tangier.
But my ancestors
had always kept the key
to the family home...
It was in Toledo.
I've changed my name four times.
Levy has been the longest-lasting,
but also the heaviest to carry.
I suppose it's the name
I'll be buried with.
The doctors have been
very stingy with me.
And only given me
a few months to live.
So I have no time to waste.
Monsieur Franch,
I want you to go to Shanghai.
To look for someone.
If you find them,
your mission will be
to bring them back here.
I want you to see something.
It may not be of much use,
but anyway...
it's the only thing of hers
I still have.
She's my daughter.
When this photo was taken,
her name was... Judith.
She must be 14 by now.
Her mother's name is Cheng Jing.
She used to work
at the Theater of the Cats,
that's where I met her.
Her favorite number,
and what gave her a certain fame,
she always finished with a gesture.
The Shanghai Gesture.
I used to sing
the songs that I learned
as a boy to Judith,
but her mother taught her
that gesture.
That gesture.
Cheng Jing changed my daughter's name.
She named her Qiao Shu.
And then
she took her away.
I never saw either of them again.
Keep it.
And... above all.
Don't lose it.
is the only person in the world
who carries my blood.
You understand, don't you?
I know you also have a daughter.
I want to see mine.
Monsieur Franch.
Please, find her.
May I ask why you feel
the need to do this.
After so much time has passed?
You have a good head on you,
Monsieur Franch.
I have spent my whole life.
With people around me,
night and day,
and I've always had to pretend.
You have no idea how tiring that is.
But that's over now.
So... I'm going to tell the truth.
I want you to find my daughter,
because she's the only person
in the world.
Who looks at me differently,
That's all I want from her:
I want to see that gaze
one last time before I die.
Her gaze.
Nothing more.
Very well, Monsieur Lvy.
I will go to Shanghai.
"He was called Julio Arenas.
"This is one of the last shots
of his acting career.
"He disappeared in 1990,
"while working on The Farewell Gaze,
"the movie that never existed.
"He was presumed dead,
but his body was never found."
Good morning. Please,
the program "Unresolved Cases"?
- Come this way, I'll open.
- Thanks.
The audition's downstairs.
I'm Miguel Garay, I've got
an appointment with Marta Soriano.
One moment.
Marta, Miguel Garay is here.
Come in, Miguel.
It's more or less
what we spoke about over the phone.
One amount for your time
and the interview tomorrow,
and another for the rights
to the film material.
It's amazing
there's still anything left.
It's not much.
Only two, full sequences.
Almost the only thing
we had time to shoot.
In good condition?
I think so, but I want to check it.
They're on film, celluloid.
We'll do the telecine process.
- Should I sign on every page?
- Please.
Later I'll give you
the interview questions.
If you want to get rid of any,
just let me know. That's no problem.
And if you have anything else
from the shoot...
I'm not sure, I might have something.
Any stills of Julio
or the other actors.
We'll take anything you've got.
One copy for you...
and another for me.
How's the hotel?
I'm so glad you agreed
to take part in the show.
And that you're here.
You weren't easy to track down.
Until we found out
you no longer lived in Madrid.
I almost forgot. Production
will give you your expenses now.
We've still quite a lot to do.
Your interview, for example.
It's going to be the first one.
By the way, what about the crew?
Is there anyone else
we could interview?
I don't know.
The producer, Jos Maria Blasco.
He died, didn't he?
Yes, three years ago.
Luis Arroyo, the cameraman,
is also dead.
And Ferran Soler,
who played Monsieur Lvy.
There aren't many of us left.
Perhaps you could interview
Maria Rivas.
She played the little girl
in that movie.
I'll keep her in mind.
We have tracked down Tico Mayoral,
the journalist
from Interview magazine.
Quite a piece of work.
Mayoral was the one who spread
the conspiracy theory, right?
Yes. He created
a real firestorm.
At the time,
it was the topic of conversation.
Even at home.
Just disappearing like that,
from one moment to the next.
And in 20 years,
there have been no fresh clues.
This is definitely
the most interesting one
in the series in my opinion.
I wonder what he was thinking.
Who could've imagined
what was about to happen to him?
I thought about opening
the episode with these images.
They convey a sense of normality,
so I think it's important
to include them.
With some of the images
that you edited.
Here's you, hard at work.
Let's have a run through, Julio.
I'm recording.
Try and say your lines
in a neutral way.
As neutral as you can.
As if I were reading
from a telephone directory.
I'll read with you.
Let's go.
"Monsieur Franch, I called
because I'd like you to do something for me.
I want you to find someone."
"And if I might ask, why me?
You know there are professionals,
who take care
of this kind of business."
No, not "business", Julio.
"These kinds of matters."
"Who take care
of these kinds of matters."
Julio, you have to say it in French.
Triste Le Roy.
Triste Le Roy.
What kind of movie was it?
It's hard to explain. It's only
my second outing as a director.
I'd say it was a classic,
adventure movie.
You and Julio Arenas were friends.
How did you meet?
We met during our military service
in the Navy.
And then we met again in Madrid.
Here I have a photo
of the two of you as young men.
It's interesting because
it was taken in a prison courtyard.
The archive note says:
"The courtyard at Carabanchel prison,
football match
between workers and students."
This is a well-known photo.
It's been published quite a few times,
but not because of Julio and I,
but because it's Paco Maldonado in the photo,
who became a Minister.
And Asensio, founder
of the New Frontier publishing house.
They were somewhat older than us.
And promising politicians.
Here's Julio,
playing his favorite position,
He and I were second-class prisoners,
and to tell you the truth,
neither workers nor students.
But why were you arrested?
Public disorder offenses,
illegal propaganda
and unlawful association.
The usual at that time.
Julio had nothing to do with it.
But because we lived together,
they took him too.
During the interrogation,
he declared himself to be apolitical,
ignorant of the past
and that was to come,
but the police thought he was lying.
Julio had a tendency to be cocky,
and so he stood up to them.
They beat him senseless.
He didn't give any names,
because he didn't have any to give.
He ended up in Carabanchel
because of me,
he made a name for himself
as a mechanic in there.
He was always very handy.
He used to fix
all the prison officers' cars,
and got his sentence reduced.
He was out after a year,
and me, after a year and a half.
Apparently, you chose him
as the protagonist for your movie...
Against the advice of some.
Yes, but then I shot some auditions
that had everyone convinced.
Some witnesses, members of the crew,
said that the final week
of shooting was tough.
That Arenas seemed very nervous
and he's having trouble concentrating.
Nothing out of the ordinary happened.
Those kinds of things
always happen on movie sets.
The shoot was interrupted,
and "The Farewell Gaze" was never finished.
Why? Couldn't you find a solution?
I wrote that part with Julio in mind.
He wasn't easy to replace.
But apart from that,
even if we had found a new actor,
we would have had to shoot.
Everything we'd already shot
all over again.
And you never directed again.
I didn't have the opportunity,
although I admit
I didn't look for it either.
Because you were always a writer.
You won the "Caf Gijon" Award
when you were young,
with your first novel,
called "The Ruins".
Later on, you published
two more novels,
as well as a book of short stories
you wrote in Paris.
And you spent a lot your time
working on scripts.
Yes, for a while.
Going back to our discussion...
If we go back and read everything
published about the case at the time,
there are some articles,
those from the gossip columns,
that insist Julio Arenas
had many personal problems.
Is that true?
Julio could be difficult sometimes.
But he was also very generous.
He lived a very frank, open life.
Did he have problems?
Yes. But who doesn't?
Your friend's body was never found.
What do you think happened?
Accident or suicide?
What do you expect me to say?
I think you know
more than I do about mysteries.
Thank you,
but I'd like to know your opinion.
Any hypothesis is possible.
And so...
There was a time that Julio
couldn't stand life anymore.
He tried to keep his head
above water with movies,
but it didn't always work.
That's all.
Thank you. Thank you so much.
OK, we're finished.
That was great.
I wanted to ask a question.
Do you know Ana Arenas,
Julio's daughter?
Yes. Of course.
We've contacted her several times.
Her testimony would be so important,
but she always turns us down.
Such a shame.
Perhaps you could talk to her?
Now that you've seen
the kind of program it is.
I mean, it's also a homage
to the great actor her father was.
Perhaps you could let her know that.
I haven't seen her for a long time.
I don't think I've her number.
I can give it to you.
Shall we try?
May I? Thanks.
- Who is it?
- Max.
Come up, you heathen.
I've been waiting for you.
How are you?
Rusty, thanks to this damn humidity.
Come in, come in.
Is it true you're going on Television?
It seems so.
Where did you get that raincoat?
It was in the storage unit.
It reminds me of someone.
people keep movies on a hard drive.
But as I always say,
more than 90% of the history of cinema.
Is on film, photochemical film.
So, what should be done?
I can't see them
all being put on memory cards.
This industry has gone down the drain.
I don't know what I'll do
with all these copies.
I really don't want to have
to close this place down.
It was never a business,
as you know, but now,
it's completely ruinous.
People who are interested in this stuff
have no means to project it.
Hardly anyone has a projector anymore.
It's... industrial archeology.
Archeology, Miguel. Like you and me.
Here they are.
"The Farewell Gaze". Two cans.
"Triste Le Roy".
On one, we have the dailies,
and on the other...
Yes, the standard copy.
The standard copy,
of those two sequences you insisted on
putting sound to...
And which I had to pay for...
The remains of the shipwreck.
Let's go over there,
to the moviola, to the left.
- They're very well preserved.
- I'm offended you think they wouldn't be.
Carry on.
Are they going to show them
on the program?
It would seem so.
But I just want to give you
the first sequence.
You're always so superstitious.
Let's see if they respect the framing.
No worries, I'll leave a note.
They'll do fine.
I'm not too sure about that.
What it doesn't say here,
is whether you have control
over how the interview's edited.
I don't really care,
didn't say anything that wasn't true.
That Soriano's dangerous.
She's a smart cookie.
Don't be so apprehensive.
She made a good impression on me.
Better not to let your guard down.
You've never listened to me,
which is why your business deals
have transpired the way they have.
- Give me a break, Max.
- "Give me a break"...
Keep it to hand, just in case.
How long since
we've seen each other?
Two years?
At least.
Things going OK?
I can imagine what you're going say.
You never know what might happen,
so in case, I'll save a place for you here.
Thanks, Max.
- Mind if I smoke?
- And how's the novel going?
What novel?
Weren't you writing one?
No, no, no,
I write short stories occasionally.
To keep me entertained if anything.
But it's about the novel.
- Novels are serious business.
- I know.
You've changed posters.
You've taken down Fausto
and put up Ray.
Yes. I'm a real fan of anything Germanic,
as long as it's silent,
but finding that poster.
Was one of my biggest conquests.
I have a copy of the movie in 16mm.
I like seeing the poster up there.
Something I've realized again,
watching it there,
on the moviola,
Is that that damn Arenas
was a great actor.
The bad thing was he took
every role ever offered to him. He never
turned a single thing down.
But that wasn't the worst of it.
The worst was that he really
couldn't handle the supreme issue.
Which was?
Getting old.
For an actor who played
the heartthrob in so many movies,
it wasn't easy for him.
I can understand that,
but I'm talking about
his everyday life.
His romances,
or skirt-chasing, if you prefer.
In that respect,
Arenas... was man overboard.
The young ladies
no longer ogled him when
he walked past them on the street.
I, myself, as someone who's never been
handsome, haven't had that problem.
Knowing how to grow old.
And you know how, I suppose?
Of course. Without fear, nor hope.
Hello, it's Miguel. Miguel Garay.
Do you remember me?
Yes, they've called
several times.
But I'm not going to take part
in that program. Are you?
I thought it over a lot,
but in the end,
I decided I would.
I recorded my interview yesterday.
They've promised they'll include
a part about the last thing
Julio and I shot together.
That and money,
I won't hide that from you.
For the rights.
Do you think people remember him?
Not everyone,
but some people definitely do.
You and I've never spoken about
what happened.
Well, about what could have happened.
That's true. I spoke to your mother,
but never to you.
I read that on the last journey
he made by car, somebody saw him.
They said
he was accompanied by a woman.
That's what was published
in Interview, but...
that journalist was a bit shady.
But say it was true,
who could that woman have been?
It could have been
one of several.
That was the way your father was.
I'm sure you're aware of that.
But it's strange. If that woman did exist,
why did she never come forward?
Well, there are some people
who prefer to keep themselves
distanced from problems.
More than once, I dreamed he was alive.
When I wake up,
I try to forget that idea.
I mean, what good is it?
If he's alive and hasn't appeared,
it's because he doesn't want to.
Because he wants nothing to do
with me or anybody else.
I've barely spoken to my son
about his granddad.
He knows who he was,
but that's about it.
If one of his films comes on TV,
I don't watch it anymore.
I don't know if he does.
I watched them as a little girl,
not all of them.
Movies are so strange in that sense.
You see a character
and you're told he's your father.
You see him, from head to toe,
with his voice.
It was his voice I recognized most.
Not his face, but his voice.
The one I heard when he called
on the phone.
His face was almost
that of a stranger,
always dressed as someone else,
always in character.
He would appear... and disappear.
He'd take me out for walks,
or out to lunch,
and then he'd leave again.
He never came to pick me up
from school,
I never went on a trip with him.
I've discovered I have nothing of his.
How is it possible he left me nothing?
Well, actually...
He did leave me a doll.
He gave it to me
when I was five years old.
But then, I didn't receive it
as a gift from him.
I was very young and I still believed
in Father Christmas.
I still have it.
And you?
What are you up to these days?
I live in a village, by the coast.
I had really missed the sea.
Aren't you writing anymore?
but without many expectations.
An exercise like any other.
I mainly do translations now.
Books about the movies
for a small publishing house.
I go out fishing every day.
I also cultivate an orchard,
a small orchard.
Look what I brought you.
I found it among some of Mom's things.
Perhaps you already have it.
You even look alike in this photo.
That was on purpose.
Both of us with those ridiculous
sailor's caps on our heads.
It has a date written on the back.
"April, 1967."
I'd only been alive for a year then.
My mom was basically a child
when my father got her pregnant.
They were only together a few years.
You can keep it.
I have to go.
I have another group waiting for me.
Distinguished tourists.
Aren't you happy at your job?
As much as can be expected.
But it turns out
it's quite boring,
to stand in front of paintings and
say almost the same thing every day.
At first, when you start working here
it's not like that. But...
after hours and hours
surrounded by so much beauty,
it becomes routine.
I've exaggerated a little.
- It's been great seeing you, Ana.
- You too.
Call me next time
you're in Madrid, please.
I'd like you to meet Carlos, my son.
I will.
You can count on it.
- Bye.
- Bye.
- Good morning.
- Hello.
Do you have "Calligraphy of Dreams",
by Mars?
I'll take it.
Would you like a bag?
Excuse me.
The number you have dialed
no longer exists.
The number you have dialed
no longer exists.
Let's see.
Here it is.
If it was an accident,
then why was the body
never recovered?
It would've been logical.
For the sea to wash him up
on the shore, but that didn't happen.
They found a camera in the car.
They developed the film,
and didn't give any importance
to its contents.
"Photos from a shoot", they said.
Let's say I shouldn't have had
access to them,
but I've always been
a trench journalist.
Julio Arenas was with a woman,
much younger than him,
Very pretty.
Why did she disappear?
Why did she never say anything?
Julio Arenas was fooling around
where he shouldn't have been, as usual,
and seduced a married woman.
It wasn't the first time,
but on this occasion,
the cuckold was someone unfortunate.
from high up.
Very high up.
And at those heights,
dishonor cannot be tolerated,
if you know what I mean.
And Julio Arenas
paid the price for it.
They got rid of him,
that's my version.
I mean, come on!
That thing with the shoes?
That was so set up.
They took them off him and left them,
where the police would find them,
And jump to
the most obvious conclusion.
What do you think?
Fucking Tico Mayoral.
- Better not stir it up...
- He seemed convinced
of what he was saying.
The truth is, it makes you think.
Julio would've loved the bit about
the unfortunate cuckold for sure.
Quite the story!
I'm sure the program's going to
turn out really well.
It's just a shame that Ana Arenas
didn't want to take part.
I understand Ana though.
The program will be aired
in about two week's time.
Sonia, our editor, has shown me
some clips of what you shot.
But only the first scene. Why is that?
- Max's problem.
- Who's Max?
The film editor, a friend.
Too bad the film was not finished.
This is the dossier we put
together of articles from the time.
It really helped me
to prepare for your interview.
- Where did you get this?
- From a collector friend of mine.
Isn't it wonderful?
Mario Guardione, tango teacher.
The things you have to do
to survive...
- Do you want me to tell you what I think?
- Go on.
The two sequences deserved better.
They deserve to be seen
somewhere else.
On the big screen.
And just as they are.
I showed you the contract.
They're paying me, Max.
each one is worth what it's worth.
Have you forgotten that hardly anyone
saw the only movie I ever finished?
I know perfectly well
that almost no one saw it,
but I also know they released it
practically without telling anyone,
just to cover their screen quota.
Like many others.
Just as good, or bad, as mine.
Forget about it.
When do you leave?
The day after tomorrow.
Let's see what they do with the program.
I'll keep my eyes open.
Max, do you remember Lola San Romn?
Of course I remember her.
The woman from Buenos Aires.
The most beautiful woman
to have ever graced the Conservatory.
A great singer as well.
She was a girlfriend of yours,
wasn't she?
Of mine and Julio's.
Yes, that's right. Julio too.
You two were always so modern.
Have you had any news of her?
Not much, besides the legend,
that she one day went to California,
On the arm of an American singer.
She left a lot
of broken hearts behind.
Not just you and Julio,
the kings of the mambo.
Pour me a bit more of that cure-all,
will you?
I heard Lola was here.
Then you know more than I do.
I hadn't seen this before.
It's really good.
Yes. Your kid had some talent...
How he drew.
The last time he came here,
he forgot those gloves
he used for the motorbike.
He called me the next day,
to say he was going to come by
and pick them up.
But he never made it.
God damn that car that hit him.
I still have the gloves,
and the comics he used to draw.
I was always on at him,
to enroll in Fine Arts,
but he never paid me
any damn attention.
Neither you, nor me.
Oh, yes, hello.
Yes, yes, it was me who called.
My name's Miguel Garay.
Yes, that's right.
The guy who taught you to play poker.
No, no, no,
I gave up poker a long time ago.
Yes... Forgive me, Jaime,
you caught me half asleep.
I'm in Madrid.
And I was hoping
to track down your sister,
I heard she was here on vacation
and I'd love
to see her before
she goes back to Buenos Aires.
That's in Segovia.
I spent many summers in this house.
Since 76,
when we had
to run out of Buenos Aires.
It's good
my brother decided not to sell it.
Whenever I'm back,
I like to spend a few days here.
For the memories.
Although not all of them are so good.
My parents' separation
changed everything.
The divorce was
anything but amicable.
I'd never even seen them fighting.
My mom took it the hardest.
She couldn't stand it
and she let herself die.
That piano over there was hers.
I used to play it a lot.
And what about you?
Do you live with anyone?
I don't know why,
but I thought as much.
It's hard to be bothered, isn't it?
What happened to Odette?
I haven't seen her for years.
Not since Mikel's funeral.
I think she's in Brittany.
She remarried.
I live with my second, Diego.
We've been together 18 years.
Where does the time go?
My first, the Yankee,
ended up
as a motivational speaker on TV,
Giving people advice
on how to live their lives.
- We are nobodies.
- No.
What do you do?
I go fishing, I read,
I write things every now and then...
I let time pass
and not much more.
Sounds like a lovely life.
I'm still involved in music.
I'm with Warner now as a talent scout.
My specialty is Latin music,
of course.
I have to be back in a few days.
What did you say
was the name of the program?
Unresolved Cases.
I should say!
- What did they want from you?
- They wanted me to talk about Julio.
The other day,
I watched a part of what we'd filmed,
ten minutes.
Julio was really doing
a great job in it.
Did you know he called me
during the shoot?
He called from California,
exactly one week before he disappeared.
It was my birthday.
He always remembered. You didn't.
How do you know I didn't?
Julio was a professional ladies' man.
"Mario Guardione.
Learn to tango in 15 days."
To think you were
the one who taught him!
He learned in a couple of days.
Unlike others.
Compared to Julio, I always had
two left feet. I admit it.
Sometimes I think that was the reason.
You left me for him
because I could hardly dance.
Oh, Miguel, please!
You fool. You're such a fool!
He was really thrilled
with his part in your movie.
He confessed he'd gone through a really
hard time, but that he was feeling better,
and ready to keep fighting on.
Well, it didn't last long.
He'd started drinking again.
Like he used to
when he hit rock bottom,
And right in the middle of the shoot.
I had no idea.
There was a story behind it all
that had to be kept secret.
It happened overnight, the last week.
I tried to make sure
the crew didn't find out, but...
they noticed something was up, because...
Julio started forgetting his lines.
Just two days before he disappeared,
I'd had to send him back to the hotel,
because he could barely stand.
It wasn't down to typical,
actors' nerves, no.
It was the same old story.
He'd fallen in love again.
With a woman who made
his life a misery.
That woman did exist.
Although I never even
knew her real name.
Everything went to shit.
Three months he was going to the gym,
not a drop of booze,
at rehearsal every day...
It was our pact.
I lost my best friend,
but I also lost my movie,
game over.
In the end
I accepted it was an accident.
There were so many stories...
What hurt me the most was
what some
of his colleagues said.
Some people believed Julio
had just run off,
on a whim. Just like that.
It wasn't such an absurd hypothesis,
I'm afraid.
It crossed my mind too.
When he was feeling down,
I heard him say, more than once,
that he just wanted to disappear.
The idea of changing his identity,
of starting a new life somewhere else.
What the three of us dreamed about
when we were young.
A place from which
you no longer want to return?
Yes. From which
you never want to return.
I never found it.
Did you?
When I got fed up with California
and went to live in Buenos Aires,
at least I got back
my childhood neighborhood.
Then you're been luckier than me.
Why not?
Think about it for a moment,
Lola. Why not?
Why couldn't that desire of Julio's
have come true?
without trace.
Not him as an actor,
his movies will
always be there,
But rather the person he really was.
I've imagined many times
how it could have played out.
The scene. The moment in which
everything suddenly crossed his mind.
The last night of his life.
I can almost see him
there on that clifftop.
The sea was rough.
His shoes were hurting him
and so he'd taken them off.
It started raining.
And it was there,
in that exact moment,
that he got the idea
to give the finger
to the whole world.
yes, but without the need
to kill himself.
If people thought him dead,
that didn't matter. It was better,
much better.
He ponders the idea
until the sun starts coming up.
His car was just 300 feet away,
but he couldn't see it anymore.
He only had eyes
for the ball and the player...
opposite him, about to shoot.
The head and tails of his fate.
But, was that what really happened?
You know what?
You're still a film geek.
I brought you something.
Your "Ruins".
I found them on Cuesta de Moyano hill.
It's been autographed.
"To Lola.
For the suns we shared"
How lovely.
The most beautiful dedication
anyone ever wrote to me.
I can't imagine how many places
it had been before ending up there.
I swear I didn't sell it,
or give it away.
I left for San Francisco with only
the clothes on my back. Everything I owned,
I left at my mother's house.
When she died, her apartment
was sold with everything in it,
even these suns.
It's for you, once again.
But don't try reading it again,
gave it a go, but I couldn't finish it.
Remember that song?
Which one?
That song I loved so much.
Let's see...
Not that one.
That's the one.
Now that time has passed,
Now that life has passed,
Now I laugh if I think about it,
Now I've forgotten those days,
I don't know why I wake up,
Some empty nights,
Hearing a voice singing,
A voice which, maybe,
Is my own.
I wish I could die...
from love right now,
so you'd know...
Kali, Kali.
What happened?
What's wrong, Kali? What...?
Hi, Mike.
- Morning, Toni.
- How was Madrid?
Better than expected.
Did he behave OK?
He's so good. We didn't even know
he was here. He spent most of the time
lying outside your pad though,
making sure no one came anywhere near.
Thanks for looking after him.
- What time is it?
- Almost eight.
Almost eight?
I'm going to the flea market in Calahonda,
to try and sell something.
How's Teresa?
Not so uncomfortable now. Cravings...
This is for when
the time comes to celebrate.
Not long to go now.
Thanks, Mike.
Thanks to you guys.
See you later.
See you.
We watered your veggie patch.
You have lots of ripe tomatoes.
Here you go.
You're very classical tonight?
It's very clear to me:
Esmeralda or Estrella.
Shut up.
She's going to be named Jane.
Sweetie, it's such an old-fashioned name.
An ordinary plain Jane!
What do you think, Mike?
Which do you like best?
Whichever one you choose
will be just fine.
I don't like it when
people are named after things.
Names are names and that's that.
Good point, Big Foot!
I'm not the first person
who's been saddled
with a name people
have just decided to call me.
And it's not even vaguely related
to my real name.
I was baptized Rufino,
but hardly anyone knows it.
Fuck me, though, Rufino.
What a name!
Thank God, now I'm Big Foot.
Same thing happened to you,
didn't it, Mike?
Not really.
Mike is the same as Miguel,
just in English.
When I got here,
Charlie, that crazy American
who lived down there,
just started calling me Mike.
And Mike just stuck around
because of these fools.
So, Teresita,
don't stress out about it too much.
That little girl will have
whatever name God has in store for her.
All yours, Mike.
Go on, play the song we like so much.
The one from the movie.
Go on, I'll follow along.
How did it go?
I'm off to bed.
Honey, tidy away
my jewelry, will you?
Good night.
We'll be going soon as well.
There's no rush. I'm going to read
for a while anyway. See you tomorrow.
See you tomorrow.
- Sleep well.
- I'll be right there.
Tomorrow at five.
Good art on time.
You know already, okay?
Don't worry, Big Foot,
I'll be there.
- See you tomorrow.
- Good night.
How's the soap opera going?
Any new episodes?
Well, not many...
The plot's still pretty much
in the same place it was.
The other day, that busybody Matias,
the bailiff, came round
and told me, "as a friend",
that the owners of this place
have stopped throwing things
at each other's heads and called a truce.
They don't know how long it will last,
looks like they all want the same thing.
To sell this plot. He suggested
I didn't make many plans here,
that we wouldn't be here for much longer.
Well, we knew that already.
Yeah, but maybe Matias came
over to sound us out. Whatever,
things are serious now.
Teresa and I think as soon as the baby's
born, we'll look for somewhere else.
- What are you going to do?
- I haven't thought about it.
But I should start fixing up
my car just in case.
For sure.
I'm going to bed. It's time.
- Good night. See you tomorrow.
- See you tomorrow.
And cheers!
Toni, put the guitar down!
Bed time!
Here, Mike, help yourself.
Fulge, I told you,
it's going to rain. Clear it up.
...alarmed by a column of smoke.
Coming from
an industrial plastics warehouse.
The fire is now under control
and fortunately no one is hurt.
Chano Rodriguez.
His name was Julio Arenas
and he was an actor.
One of the most loved and admired
in Spanish cinema.
He disappeared
from one day to the next,
22 years ago,
while he was in the middle
of shooting a movie.
What was the movie like?
It's hard to explain.
It was only my second outing
as a director.
I'd say it was a classic,
adventure movie.
You and Julio Arenas were friends.
How did you meet?
We met during our military service
in the Navy.
And then we met again in Madrid.
Here I have a photo
of the two of you as young men.
It's interesting, because
it was taken in a prison courtyard.
The archive note says...
Hi, Max.
Only a little bit, I couldn't
bring myself to watch the whole thing.
No. What I expected.
Yes, it could always be worse.
You recorded it?
As far as I'm concerned
you can erase it.
Yes, erase it.
Good evening, Max. Bye.
You don't want a bite?
- It's really good. There's more, huh?
- I know.
A little shot?
Hi, Marta.
How's it going?
No, no, no.
It's fine. What's up?
And...? She's sure?
I can barely hear you.
My signal's really bad here.
Yes, send me the photo.
I'll call you later.
I call you in a while.
Yes, we'll talk later. Speak later.
Don't forget to send the photo.
Has someone died?
I said, did someone die?
Marta? Garay here.
Can you hear me better now?
I was at sea before,
I couldn't hear you properly.
Well, I don't have
much to spare now.
Yes, I've seen the photo.
It certainly looks like him.
A lot like him.
When did you say it was?
Four days ago?
I don't know that village,
but no, it's not far.
I could go over there.
Belen. Belen Granados.
Social worker.
Yes, I understand, it's an asylum.
And you say she's sure it's him.
OK. Thanks, Marta.
What a soak, Kali.
What a soak.
- Don't spoil him too much.
- I know.
When are you
coming back, Mike?
I hope soon,
but I'm not so sure when to be honest.
- Bye, Teresa.
- Bye, Mike.
- Belen?
- Yes. You must be Garay, the director?
Yes. My name's Miguel.
I'm so glad you came, Miguel!
It's a pleasure to meet you.
Let's go inside. How are you?
- Fine.
- Was it hard to find?
A little, but not too bad.
Good morning.
- Good morning, Diego.
- Good morning.
- How did we wake up?
- Good. Yourself?
- Very well.
- Thank you.
This way.
- Good morning.
- Beln.
- Tell me, Vicente.
- I need to speak with you, please.
- Stay here, I'll come find you.
- Seriously?
Yes. Is everything OK?
Good morning.
Good morning.
Come this way.
- Beln.
- Tell me.
When will you speak
to Diego's family?
- In a little bit.
- Alright then.
- Hi.
- Hello, Beln.
- Good morning Carmen.
- Hi.
Come through,
Leave your things there if you like.
You're finally here, Miguel.
I'll explain.
I don't really watch much TV,
to be honest. But I like that program.
When I saw the episode about the actor,
it left me speechless.
I couldn't believe it.
I watched the program again,
on the channel's website,
just in case I'd been imagining it,
but not at all.
That actor
was someone I saw every day.
He wasn't dead. He was... here.
I wanted to talk to Marta Soriano,
so I called her up.
At first,
she thought I was a bit nuts.
But I can be very persistent
and so I wrote to her...
and sent her the photo.
Then she got back in touch with me.
Truth is it was a nice touch,
wasn't it?
Did she send it to you?
Yes. That's why I came.
It's been a long time
and he's completely lost his memory.
He has no idea who he is.
No idea at all.
But I believe it's him.
I believe it's Julio Arenas.
And I'm so sure,
Because there's more proof.
The photo of the little Chinese girl.
The one in the program.
It's the same one. I've seen it.
He's got it.
It was one of the few things
he had on him when he arrived here.
Are you sure it's the same photo?
The little Chinese girl with the fan.
He keeps it inside one of
those notebooks kids use when
they're learning to write.
I've seen him many a time,
with that notebook open in his hands.
And I know he's looking at the photo.
Although I don't think he knows
who she is, or why he has it.
Can we see it?
It would have to be
without him realizing.
You don't think anything bad
will come of this, do you?
I hope not.
It's important you see the photo.
But I think I should see him first,
don't you?
There he is.
He does all the maintenance work
for us.
A real handyman, as they say.
He's not a resident here, so he's
given accommodation and a small salary;
Enough for tobacco
but not much else.
But he seems happy with it.
He's never complained.
We call him Gardel.
Why Gardel?
Because he's always whistling
or singing tangos.
I'd like to see him up-close.
I've got an idea.
He eats with us, with the workers here.
Why don't you join us?
That would be great. If I may.
Of course.
Now he's off to buy lime.
Come with me. Let's take advantage of
him going out to show you where he lives.
He liked this little house very much
since he saw it.
The nuns offered him a room
like the others, but he did not want it.
Locked himself in there,
started his workshop.
He sleeps there.
Let's go.
Of course. Very difficult.
- Very difficult.
- Of course. Why?
It's good. Of course.
Some warm soup.
Do you want some more?
- No.
- No?
Can I have your plate? Thanks.
We're very quiet this morning.
- We're not saying anything, eh?
- Put some salt in the soup.
It's a little bland.
Not long until elections...
It looks... They're delicious.
I know you'll like them.
You were right.
It's him.
It's Julio.
What most impacted me was his stare,
when we faced each other.
He looked at me as if I was...
no one.
I'll have to call Benavides.
The neurologist.
Doctor Benavides.
The Sisters are waiting for us.
Shall we go?
Let's go.
Maria Amaro, Maria Amaro.
Please, come to reception.
You have a family visit.
Maria Amaro, Maria Amaro.
Please, come to reception.
You have a family visit.
And what did you say your name was?
Julio. Julio Arenas.
He was an actor.
Could you tell us something about him?
I could tell you
many things about my friend,
but I know nothing
of the man I just saw.
What have you been able
to find out about him?
That he was an undocumented migrant.
That's what we were told.
But it didn't really add up, because,
although he didn't speak too much.
Whenever he did
it would be in Spanish.
Three years ago, he was found unconscious
in Motril, suffering from heatstroke.
He was taken to the ER
at Santa Ana hospital.
He had no documents on him.
Just a bag with some clothes and...
a few more things.
Do you know
where he was living at that time?
No. It seemed like
he was just passing through Motril.
Someone said they'd seen him
walking around the port,
trying to find a boat
to take him over to Ceuta.
That could be true,
because he was a sailor.
One afternoon...
we were taking a walk
by the beach together...
and then all of a sudden, he stopped.
He spent a while
staring at the horizon.
Then he pointed at it and told me
that he'd been
in every country in the world
with a coast.
Every single one.
Then he should have his sailor's card.
No, nothing at all.
And when we'd ask him his name,
he'd say one thing one day,
and something different the next.
But no-one ever
thought he was lying.
Everyone thought he'd gone
a bit loopy from the sunstroke.
That is until Benavides saw him.
It was he who discovered
he had a problem with his brain,
it was Sister Consuelo
who gave him his name.
She's overjoyed with her Gardel.
Oh, yes. I am indeed.
I named him Gardel
because he was always singing tangos.
hardly anyone knows what a tango is.
But as a girl, in my village,
I danced them all the time.
So I named him Gardel.
Tell me,
as someone coming from outside,
did I choose the best name for him,
or didn't I?
Yes, you did.
Do you know
if he has any living relatives?
A daughter, named Ana.
She lives in Madrid.
We'll have to let her know.
Poor thing!
but how happy she's going to be.
Perhaps it sounds
a little strange, but...
But I'd like to be close to him,
to see what he says and does.
To find out what he remembers,
if anything.
You are welcome to visit whenever.
Actually, I meant
I could stay here for a few days,
if you don't mind.
Just until his daughter arrives.
I'd be just another resident.
He could stay in Araceli's old room.
I can't see what harm
could come of it, Mother.
Yes, well... Perhaps a few days.
I don't think it's a bad idea.
You're Gardel.
Here they call me Gardel.
Isn't that your name?
I don't know.
But do you know who Gardel was?
He was a singer: Gardel.
Do you sing too?
Yes, sometimes.
And what is it you sing?
Oh, little path that time erased.
One day,
you saw us passing by together.
I've come for the last time.
I've come...
I've come to tell you my troubles.
Oh, little path, how you used to be...
Lined with clovers...
...and reeds in bloom.
Soon you will be a shadow.
Soon you will be a shadow.
A shadow just like me.
Are you the man who used to sing?
The man who used to sing
before I did?
I'm Miguel.
Here he is.
Here he is.
Put your shoes on.
Must we have this same conversation again?
How many times do I have to tell you?
Come on, please.
Can you believe it?
He's barefoot all day.
Quite ridiculous.
It's your father.
I treated him around three years ago,
more or less.
He was in intensive care
for several days.
My diagnosis was
that he was suffering
a neurological deterioration,
brought on, in part, by alcohol.
He may have suffered some kind
of brain trauma.
What we call retrograde amnesia.
It can wipe out
a whole lifetime suddenly.
But when do you think it happened?
Was it in the moment he disappeared,
or later?
The logical thing would be to assume
it happened when he disappeared,
and that's why he couldn't
find his way back to the movie set.
Why do you ask? Why do you think
it might have been later?
It's something
that crosses my mind occasionally.
When I put myself in his shoes.
Yes, but in that case,
if that is what happened,
his disappearance would,
in theory, be voluntary,
prior to the brain trauma.
What led you to think that?
I don't know.
But there was something else besides.
We had no idea about his life prior
to us finding him.
Now, we do.
We know his real name.
But what is a name anyway?
Nice question.
You can tell you're a writer.
Isn't your friends life
in that dossier.
It can do something
we doctors can barely do,
help him recover
some of what he's lost.
Don't forget what I told you before.
Memory is very important, yes,
but a person is more than just memory.
A person also has feelings,
That's where you and his family
might be able to do,
something that moves him,
something that could awaken his soul.
His soul?
Although that might sound
a little stale to you.
No, no. No, no.
I remember when they brought him
to the home. I went to see him.
I asked him something
I'd never asked him before.
If he felt alive.
He didn't answer.
I insisted,
and then he told me
that he didn't know,
that he didn't know
what it meant.
Can I help?
Sister Lucia told me
it might be good for me.
Do you know
how to do anything?
I have a vegetable patch.
A vegetable patch?
Then go and tend to it.
I can't right now, I must be here.
There's only enough work for one here.
And I'm not planning on dying.
That's for old people.
Old people die.
Come on then.
Show me your hands.
Your hands.
They're not bad.
Working hands.
Like mine.
Don't you recognize me?
Don't you recognize me?
I don't know.
Come on then.
We're going whitewashing.
Go get water.
Where did you learn
how to ties these knots?
They just came out like that.
Do you know what they're called?
Sailor's knots.
I learned them the same way you did.
New Navy recruits.
On board the Lightning, out ship.
See the name on our sailors' caps?
Sailors' caps...
The hats we're wearing.
What does it say there?
"Lightning Destroyer".
This is Miguel Garay, that's me.
And this other guy is you,
Julio Arenas.
That's not me.
And this other guy isn't you either.
That's not me.
The Bowline Knot.
- Ana.
- Hi, Miguel.
- Was it hard finding this?
- No.
And you told, me
you're living in the asylum?
I wanted to be close by.
And the Sisters
have been enormously hospitable.
I've booked a room here for three nights.
I don't know if it'll be enough.
What's this photo?
Qiao Shu.
It's from the movie. It's his.
He must have taken it from the set.
The amazing thing
is that he's kept it
for the last 20 years.
But does he recognize you?
Sometimes I feel like he does,
or maybe it's just my imagination,
but it only lasts a second.
he looks at me
as if he were staring at a brick wall.
Or he doesn't look at me at all.
The truth is, I'm not sure why I came.
Why did you come?
Because he could be my father.
He is.
So you say.
And if it's true, maybe
he'll recognize me when he sees me,
and come back
from wherever he is now.
But what scares me the most
is that I might not recognize him.
And what if
nothing comes of all this?
It's a possibility,
but I think we must try at least.
Shall we go to the Retirement Home?
It's ten minutes from here.
Yes, let's go.
There's light, for sure he's awake.
I'd rather go alone.
I'm Ana.
I'm Ana.
Do you like that cat?
I feed it every day.
Have you always lived here?
Do you mean the cat?
No, you.
No, not always.
I think I've lived in many places.
Even China.
I like it here...
because it's by the sea.
Don't you have any children?
No, I don't.
Well, I don't know.
Do you know how old you are?
I've been told I'm over 70.
To give a rough idea,
because they don't know.
Neither do I.
This place is full of old people.
You're not one of Sisters,
are you?
I'm just passing through.
Good evening.
Did Gardel behave himself?
Very well.
Belen told me that Ana is thinking
of going back to Madrid already.
What a shame.
Tell her that it's OK,
there's no need
for her to worry.
Her father is happy here
and I'll make sure he stays that way.
Please tell her.
Of course, I'll tell her, Sister.
Please give her this from me.
Just some of the things Gardel
had about his person,
when he was picked up on the street.
They'd been left at the hospital
and so they forwarded them on to us here.
And I kept them safe.
I'd almost forgotten all about them.
I think it's best if Ana has them,
don't you?
I'll give them to her.
If you're cold, let me know
and I'll bring you another blanket.
We don't have any money here,
but we do have blankets.
This is Max's answering machine,
I can't come to the phone right now.
If you wish to,
leave a message after the tone.
Max, sorry for calling so late,
but this is really important.
Will you do me a favor?
I need you to get those two sequences
from my movie and bring them here for me.
I want to do a screening.
It's for Julio.
Yes, Julio, as you hear.
He's reappeared alive.
I'll explain when I see you.
I'll send you the address
of the asylum now.
I'm counting on you, partner.
You know what caught my eye
most out of everything?
The scapulary.
That king.
My dad played chess?
No, not chess.
Do I have to take
all these things with me?
Sister Consuelo told me
they were for you.
My father went one day, I don't
know where, and he never came back.
I don't think he ever will.
Ana, wait.
Last night the storm woke me
and I couldn't get back to sleep.
I had an idea,
and now I can't get it out of my head.
Ever since I saw that king in the box.
I think in your dad's head
there's something
that connects that photo he kept
for so many years,
with that photo and king.
Triste Le Roy.
The setting of the movie
we shot together.
"The sad king."
I think it's a sign.
- A sign of what?
- That's what I want to find out.
Your dad has no memory,
but I'm not sure
he's without awareness.
What would happen
if he could see some images
from the last movie he worked on?
There isn't much left, but it is
an important part because it's the end.
He never saw any of it.
Not even the dailies.
See it? But where?
- Here.
- Here?
Last night I rang a friend.
He'll be here in a few hours,
with the sequence from the movie.
I want your dad to see it.
- Do you think it will help?
- I don't know.
But in that scene, he appears
with the little Chinese girl,
from the photo.
Both of them together.
In action,
with their voices and their gestures.
Just as they were back then.
Think about it, please.
If your dad returns to Triste Le Roy,
he'll understand one thing at least:
Where that photo he's been...
carrying around with him all this time
is from.
I don't know what to say.
The best thing would be
to screen the film in a cinema.
There's one in the village,
close to your hotel.
They closed it down a couple of
months ago. But it's still standing.
Just a moment, Marta, please.
Don't go anywhere, Ana.
Yes, tell me.
You come up with wild ideas,
my friend.
Having me bring all this
down here, I almost didn't make it.
I spent more than 15 miles
in a traffic jam.
I'm just lucky
I didn't get robbed by bandits.
I'll turn on the light.
You will find all this
a bit unloved.
It hasn't been touched
since it closed down.
Go through, go through.
This cinema was built by my grandfather,
may he rest in peace.
He started at a young age...
Taking the cinema along with him
everywhere he went.
What do you think?
Much better
than the one I brought.
That's the one that might work.
Excuse me.
These projectors have been
more than once in the filming
that took place in this area.
That was years ago.
It was what they shot every day.
The rushes.
So said the Provini.
They were all Italians,
Those who argue a lot
with their hands.
They made Westerns.
This one is very good,
Don Rafael.
I don't understand what
you're hoping will happen, my friend.
You think a movie can bring
about a miracle? Give me a break!
haven't existed
in movies since Dreyer died.
And I should know,
because I'm a practicing...
I don't know what planet you're on.
Arenas has lost it, yes,
but he knows what he wants.
I realized last night, when we were
having dinner with him in the asylum.
He only trusts that nun
that follows him around everywhere...
- as if she were his mother.
- Don't give me a hard time, Max.
"Don't give me a hard time"...
Here. Get sweeping.
It might do you some good.
I'm going to get the car battery.
I left it charging.
I'll be right back.
I don't know how you did it, partner.
"Gardel" going for a premiere
with his nun.
Even that Soriano woman's here.
I couldn't say no.
She wanted to see Julio...
- and the ending.
- What ending?
Of the movie.
Sure. There's no smoking in here.
Forget what I said this morning.
Thanks, Max.
Everything you've been telling me,
your endless stories,
believer, they are no longer of any use.
Do what you have to do,
do it for fuck sake.
Come on, they're waiting for you.
- Good morning everyone.
- Good morning.
Thank you for coming.
Sister Consuelo, please.
And Sister. Come.
Sit, please.
- Beln.
- Yes?
Sit there.
Thank you.
Take your seat, please.
Don Rafael, the door, please.
Go ahead.
They've arrived.
Monsieur Lvy.
My name is Qiao Shu.
My daughter,
My darling,
Amen, amen, amen,
Don't throw yourself,
To the sea,
The sea,
Is in fortune,
Look it's going to take you away.
Take me,
And bring me,
Amen, amen, amen,
Seven fathoms deep,
May I be swallowed,
By a black fish.