4th Annual Festival of New Spanish Cinema

It’s definitely time for some fresh directorial faces behind Spain’s silver screen. The great Spanish master filmmaker Luis Buñuel, while artistically immortal, is dead. Pedro Almodóvar is 60 years old and no longer the new niño in town. But not to worry, there’s a new crop of directors from España, and you can see work from some of the best at the 4th Annual Festival of New Spanish Cinema.

The festival opens Friday with the wonderfully surreal The Great Vazquez, director Óscar Aibar’s 2010 biopic on Manuel Vázquez, Spain’s comic book artist extraordinaire. In the animated sequences, Vázquez’s most famous characters, the schlubs and loud-mouthed yentas, come alive to comment on his own colorful life of perpetual cons and infidelities. Director Aibar will be on hand for a Q&A following the screening.

Among the other offerings are Carles Bosch’s affecting 2010 Alzheimer’s documentary Bicycle Spoon Apple (6:30 p.m., January 27) and an oldie, Narciso Ibáñez Serrador’s alarming — and sleazy — 1970s horror classic Who Can Kill a Child? (4 p.m., January 28).

The opening reception with director Aibar begins at 6 p.m. Friday. The festival runs through January 29. Rice Cinema, 6100 Main. For complete schedule, call 713-348-4853 or visit www.ricecinema.rice.edu. $5 to $6.
Fridays-Sundays. Starts: Jan. 20. Continues through Jan. 29, 2012

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