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Heroes (2010)

Heroes 2010Remember this moment. The smell and the sensation of the warm sun and the water splashing on your backs. Friends. All this will change.Years will go by, the days will get shorter and you’ll find it harder to find magical moments. Don’t be in a hurry to grow up. Believe me: one day the memory of this moment could save your lives.”

You’ve just read the opening words of the Spanish coming of age film Héroes. I have often been asked to name the title of my favorite coming of age movie.  Until this day my responses have always been vague as I was not sure which one to pick.  I say that as someone who is very fond of the genre,  having seen hundreds of such movies. And now I’ve finally found it – a movie that has moved me like no other.  A movie that has taken me on a journey back to the days of my childhood.  A movie which made my voice tremble when I thanked  the person who recommended it to me.  Yes, it’s now my favorite coming of age film – a movie I can’t wait to tell you about – Héroes.

Heroes

The story of Héroes may seem familiar to some of you. Without a doubt, Pau Freixas (the film’s director) worked on this masterpiece with some classic titles in mind:  Stand by Me (1986), The Goonies (1985) and Explorers (1985).

The storyline…

A man is driving through the countryside in a hurry to get to an important business meeting. His mind is preoccupied with thoughts about the presentation he will have to give for an important client – a presentation which could be the turning point in his career.  He is not ready for delays or surprises, but fate has plenty in store for him. A body in the middle of the road – a child. He jumps on the brakes and manages to stop the car just in time.  Thankfully the child is fine, but confused.  The man would like to help, but his clients are waiting for him …

Soon after this first encounter (the outcome of which is quite surprising for both the man and for the film’s viewers),  he meets another person – a young woman who carries a backpack and is headed to Barcelona.  He offers to give her a ride – not suspecting that they once knew each other.  Later they manage to connect and recall the most romantic and emotional day of their childhoods …

The action in Héroes takes place in two different historical times  – nowadays and in the eighties. Although the grown ups are an essential part of the story, the real protagonists of the film are five children, their adventures and emotions. The film features whimsical cinematography (bright colors and nature scenes that make you sense the summer), a trendy soundtrack  including  vibes such as Alphaville’s  Big in Japan and Forever Young, wonderful acting and a story that manages to surprise the viewer over and over again.

Every country has its classics in the coming of age genre. To me, Héroes is the Spanish equivalent of  Stand By Me – an example of a movie that exemplifies the coming of age genre at its best.   I believe  that Héroes has the potential to be placed alongside such Spanish  masterpieces as the TV series Verano azul (Blue Summer)  and the films En tu Ausencia ( In Your Absence) and  La lengua de las mariposas (Butterfly Tongues).

Héroes is a remarkable film. It  is one of those movies that leaves no one indifferent.  As a viewer, I couldn’t wish for anything more. And as reviewer, I don’t  hesitate to recommend it to all of you – fans of the coming of age genre or not.  I think chances are very high that you are going to love it as much as I did.

Heroes 2010 Spanish coming of age film ratingFilm title: Heroes
Also known as: Héroes
Release year: 2010 — Media Films, S.L.
Director: Pau Freixas
Cast: Eva Santolaria, Alex Brendemühl, Emma Suárez, Lluís Homar, Nerea Camacho, Ferran Rull, Álex Monner,
Mireia Vilapuig, Joan Sorribes, Marc Balaguer

7 COMMENTS

  1. I’m so glad I found your site, which I love. Keep up the good work. I aim to be a regular visitor.

    I wish to point out, though, that Catalan is *not* a dialect of Spanish (your Spanish friends must be Castilian chauvinists!). It has more in common with Gallo-Romance languages (i.e. French, especially its Southern (Occitan) forms) than Ibero-Romance languages like Spanish and Portugese.

    E.g. the Catalan for ‘to eat’ is menjar, which is obviously closer to French manger and Occitan manjar than it is to Spanish comer. ‘To speak’ is parlar in Catalan and Occitan (parler in French), but hablare in Spanish. ‘Table’ is taula in Catalan and Occitan (table in French) but mesa in Spanish.

    The Catalan for ‘please’ (si us plau) is obviously closer to French s’il vous plait than Spanish por favor.

    Other languages spoken in Spain include Basque, which is totally unlike any Indo-European langugage, and Galician, which is closer to Portuguese. They are all independent languages, not dialects.

    Sorry, but I have to respond when I see language fascism in action! ;-)

    Clive

    • Hello Clive,

      I am glad that you enjoy theSkyKid.com . When it comes to the usage of Catalan in cinema – I stand my ground , despite the fact that some people like you and Jayden in the comments criticize my opinion. Political views aside – I don`t see the logic in shooting a film in a ” language ” with such limited usage within the country – one region – that you have to subject it to dubbing , so that people from the same country can actually understand the dialogue . As you have noted I have not mentioned the language in the review itself – but in the comments . I have no desire to start a flame war of any kind and respect you and Jeyden for your opinions – yet when it comes to Spain I prefer to think as of a single nation – which has a considerable culture .

  2. Can you please share with us where we can see or purchase this movie? I am not interested in downloading it for free, but I’d love to see it.

    Thanks!

    • Hello John,

      The DVD can be purchased from here : http://www.dvdgo.com/dvd-heroes-edicion-coleccionista-dvd/1840390/157016. As you will see on the cite it is available as both DVD and Blu-Ray. It has almost two hours of extras – so it id definitely worth it. ( plus of course English subtitles ). By the way intriguing fact is that the film was originally filmed in Catalan ( which is like Spanish dialect despite the attempts of some people to present it as a separate language ) – then dubbed in regular Spanish. I am mentioning this as some of my Spanish friends are really irritated by the dubbing – but I guess it only matters if one is fluent Spanish speaker ( I myself am not ).

      The soundtrack is available at : http://www.rosebudbandasonora.com/catalog/product_info.php?products_id=13205&language=en&osCsid=0030tjqofghvj7nl4ip6r9enc1

    • Catalan is obviously a different language than Spanish, and I have to say that they’re doing a great job in their movies like this one (Herois) and Pa Negre as well. Good luck with your political campaign.

    • I must say that generally the Catalan culture is indeed distinct and unique. However filming a film for the general audience and irritating people from your own country ( in that case Spain ) is not the wisest decision. Of course the quality of the film has nothing to do with language disputes – I guess I have my own reasons to be biased , even if I believe they did not affect my review anymore than just pointing out the general feel in the country where the film is being produced . I saw Pa Negre – but in Spanish – actually I had no idea it was also available in Catalan

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