Cell 211 (Celda 211)

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(out of 5)


Taught, captivating thriller that grabs you quickly and never lets you go. On his first day working at a prison in an administrative position, Juan () is given a tour of the facilities by his new colleagues, but when a prison riot erupts during their rounds, Juan is badly injured and placed in an empty cell for a few minutes while the guards try to figure out what to do. Unfortunately, in a quick turn of events, that cell ends up being occupied by the rioters and our protagonist now finds himself behind enemy lines. Quickly catching on to the situation when he recovers, Juan does his best to pass himself off as another prisoner in order to survive, particularly as he ends up squaring off with the toughest badass in the joint, Malamadre ().  What is most significant, however, is the psychological effect that pretending to be a prisoner has on Juan: eventually he becomes one of them in spirit if nothing else. Tosar is outstanding as the tough guy (his character’s name means Bad Mother) who ends up respecting our hero for his spirit, having no idea what his true allegiance is, and the direction is exquisitely smooth from beginning to end.


Spain/France, 2009

Directed by

Adaptation by , Daniel Monzon, based on the novel by

Cinematography by

Produced by , , ,

Music by

Production Design by

Costume Design by

Film Editing by

Film Festivals:  TIFF 2009


Cast Tags:  , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,, , , , , , ,


European Film Award Nominations
Best European Actor (Luis Tosar)
Best European Screenwriter

Goya Awards
Best Film
Best New Actor (Alberto Ammann)
Best Lead Actor (Luis Tosar)
Best Supporting Actress (Marta Etura)
Best Director (Daniel Monzon)
Best Screenplay – Adapted
Best Sound
Best Editing

Nominations
Best Supporting Actor (Carlos Bardem)
Best Supporting Actor (Antonio Resines)
Best Cinematography
Best Special Effects
Best Original Score
Best Production Design
Best Production Supervision
Best Makeup and Hairstyles


Luis Tosar as Malamadre in Cell 211

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