Elena López Riera’s debut feature, El agua, is already finished

– The film, which was screened at the Cannes Cinéfondation and has been nominated for the main festivals, stars Bárbara Lennie alongside non-professional actors

Director Elena Lopez Riera

It is summer in a small town in the southeast of Spain and a storm threatens to break the banks of the river that crosses it, the most polluted in Europe. Throughout the town, an old popular belief is repeated like a mantra that states that some women are predestined to disappear with each new flood, because they were born with “the water in them.” And in these lands, the liquid element is always linked to death, as the young try to survive the weariness of a summer here. In this electric atmosphere that precedes the storm, Ana – who dreams of fleeing from this town that smells of death – and José fall in love, until the storm breaks and the girl disappears without a trace.

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Selected for the Cinéfondation residency at the Cannes Festival, and for the Ikusmira Berriak at the San Sebastian Festival (where it won the Ikusmira Berriak – REC Recording Studio award), as well as the support of Media Desk Suisse and Eurimages, Water -whose synopsis we open this article- is one of the most anticipated titles of this season not only in Spain, but also in the main European film festivals. The film, shot last year, stars Lennbara Lennie (whom we recently saw in the Netflix series The mess you leaveand this season will be released The crooked lines of God) Y medina snow (Mother [+see also:
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) alongside non-professional actors.

Water is the feature directorial debut of Elena Lopez Rivera (Orihuela, 1982), visual artist and doctor in Audiovisual Communication. He moved to Switzerland in 2008, where he teaches cinema and comparative literature at the University of Geneva. The filmmaker is also co-founder of lacasinegra, a group of artists dedicated to researching and experimenting with new audiovisual devices.

His first short film, village, premiered at the 2015 Cannes Film Festival Directors’ Fortnight and was selected at more than 20 international festivals. Next year, the viscera it was screened at Locarno and received the Silver Mikeldi Award at Zinebi. His latest work those who wish, was nominated for the European Film Awards and won the Pardino d’oro at Locarno 2018. The Cinémathèque Française (Paris), the Cineteca Colombiana (Bogotá) and the Gijón International Film Festival (Spain) have dedicated retrospectives to her. She has also worked as a programmer for festivals such as Entrevues Belfort (France), Seville European Film Festival (Spain) and Visions du réel (Switzerland).

Water –whose script is written by the director together with Philip Azoury and shot on location in the province of Alicante– is produced by SUICAfilms (Spain), movie (Switzerland) and worst movies (France), in co-production with Radio Television Switzerland, with the support of the European MEDIA program, the Swiss Ministry of Culture and the Valencian Film Institute. It will be distributed by of the movie.

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(Translated from Spanish by Vicky York)

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