Massimo’s Files: “Carmina o revienta” or the most original European mockumentary ever.

Spaniard actor Paco León filmed his own Lady Mother, surrounded by her relatives, in a surrealistic mockumentary named Carmina o revienta, which would mean Carmina or bursts. Let’s talk about the history, or histories, of this original pseudo-movie.

Paco León is very known in Spain for his skills as actor, he is famous for doing the role of a former dumb junky in Telecinco’s sit-com Aida since 2005, he likes to be a clown, a comedy artist, and he’s quite loved in the main bull-fighting nation for that. Yet when he introduced his first movie as debutant director in Malaga Festival, last Spring (2012), he showed up with his own family: a false biopic about his mother, named Carmina Barrios, with her real life daughter María, a grown lost child from Seville, and her drunk husband Antonio. Carmina talks about reality and her reality, in a Seville’s poor borough where she manages a highway bar (which in Spanish would be a venta). Carmina Barrios is not actually and totally real in this filme, ain’t wanna think that, and I think neither Paco wants it… he just pretends to be original (and, hell, he is!) and to do something quite strange in Spanish (and European) cinema. The jury and the public in Malaga were amused by his creation and have applauded him ever since.

Eventually, Paco and his Carmina’s crew didn’t stop their originality in the production: they decided to change things in distribution too –Carmina o revienta may be watched in the Internet (paying from €3.5 approximately to circa €5.5) and in some Spanish cinemas at the same time. Many distributors are pissed off, but Francisco León Barrios defends himself, his ideas, his creation, his crew and the public: “Internet is not the enemy, is the ally”, said to Spanish cinema magazine Fotogramas. If he were American, the FBI would have jailed him immediately… until a proper paid bond.


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