Director José Luis Garci has turned his camera inward on filmmakers and screenwriters to portray them as so self-absorbed in the creative process that there is no other world, no other human relationship that can compete. As José (Adolfo Marsillach) and Federico (Jesus Puente) work together on a new screenplay, their interactions with their family (José's teen daughters, Federico's wife) disappear under the all-consuming task of creation. The daughters give up and go off on their own, and the wife joins a convent while Federico barely notices. And when the producer is interrupted by profound grief at the sudden death of his older son, he almost automatically returns to thinking about the film project when the funeral has ended. Garci honors many great directors at the beginning of this film, and the film continues to play out as an elaboration on this homage -- an illustration both of the dedication and the cost of filmmaking, no judgments given.
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