Archive of films My Name Is Juani / Yo soy la Juani
2006, 91 min
Section: Another View
A traditionally aesthetic, polished work with ironic insight by Catalan filmmaker Bigas Luna, who tells a story which, as always, fires up our passion. His account of Juani, who works as a hypermarket cashier, is full of eroticism, hedonism, provocation and the grotesque, which have all been essential ingredients of the director’s work since his debut Tattoo.
In his portrait of an 18-year-old hypermarket cashier who decides to conquer the world, Luna returns to the model of his hero from Ham, Ham or Golden Balls. On this occasion, his “Iberian icon” has simply changed sex. Framed by a love story, the portrayal of 21st century personal ambition is left to the feminine gender, to which the Spanish machismo has to relinquish its dominant role. Dreams, passion, love and betrayal together create a female portrait with the aim of revealing the “transformation of a character into a true individual”: Juani longs for a career as an actress. Apart from the destructive gloom of her profession, she’s tethered to the stereotypical life of young people in the suburbs with their hip hop culture, and her parents’ problems are also beginning to get her down. She has been seeing Jonah since she was fifteen and she finds his jealousy constricting. But only until she decides to go after her dream… Luna spent eight months auditioning three thousand novice actresses for the lead in his film, determined to repeat his successful discoveries of Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem. He is currently planning a sequel entitled Juani Hollywood, again starring Verónica Echegui.
About the director
Bigas Luna (b. 1946, Barcelona), an internationally renowned director, studied design and, at the end of the 1960s, he and Carlos Riart set up Estudio Gris, a Barcelona studio which became established in avant-garde design. He turned exclusively to film after the death of dictator General Franco, but even his debut Tattoo (Tatuaje, 1976) had a problem with censorship. In the post-Franco era, he was the first to deal with the taboo theme of sex in his film Bilbao (1978). His four years in Los Angeles are reflected in his films from the 1980s: Reborn (1981) and Lola (1985). In 2001 the KV festival organised a Tribute to Bigas Luna, screening seven of his films from the 1990s, his most productive and successful decade: The Ages of Lulú (1990), the cult film featuring Javier Bardem Ham, Ham (1991), The Golden Balls (1993), The Tit and the Moon (1994), The Chambermaid on the Titanic (1996), Volavérunt (1999) and Sound of the Sea (2001).
Media Films, S.L
Avda Diagonal 550 4o 2a, 08021, Barcelona
Tel: +34 93 240 0244
Fax: +34 93 200 4640
About the film
Color, 35 mm
|Screenplay:||Carmen Chaves, Bigas Luna|
|Dir. of Photography:||Albert Pascual|
|Producer:||Luis de Val, Bigas Luna|
|Production:||Media Films, S.L.|
|Cast:||Verónica Echegui, Dani Martín, Laya Martí, Gorka Lasaosa, José Chaves, Mercedes Hoyos|
|Contact:||Arclight Films Australia, Media Films, S.L|