El Bola

Directed by Achero Manas
Film Movement
2000
87 Minutes
Spain
Spanish
Coming of Age, Drama
Not Rated

Pablo is a 12-year old boy raised in a violent and unforgiving environment. Embarrassed by his family life, he retreats from his classmates, engaging them only through a dangerous game. The arrival of a new boy at school, from whom he learns a new definition of friendship, leads to the discovery of a family where communication and love prevail over domination and violence. The film poignantly parallels the lives of a caring father unable to connect with his willful son, and that of distant Pablo and his abusive father who is incapable of giving him the love he needs, replacing it with something far more sinister. Told through both the children's and adults' points of view, El Bola is a stirring story that lodges in the memory.

Director & Cast

Trailer

Photos

Reviews

  • "A truly remarkable performance from its lead actor, twelve-year-old Juan José Ballesta, who plays this street urchin in equal parts tough and vulnerable."
    Jamie Russell, BBC
  • "A wonderful tale [with] amazing portrayals! Emotional and unforgettable!"
    Jen Johans, Film Intuition
  • "At once subtle and visceral...a measure of faith in the future."
    Leslie Camhi, The Village Voice
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