Josefina Martínez Álvarez e-mail(Login required)

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Josefina Martínez Álvarez e-mail(Login required)


In 1982 the Spanish Socialist Workers' Party (PSOE) came to power and put into place an ambitious cultural policy that had a considerable effect on the film industry. In 1983 the so-called “Miró Decree” was enacted. It offered generous measures to promote film production and establish a solid framework for the industry. At the same time, regional governments issued laws to boost the cinema. Both initiatives enabled debut directors to make more committed and personal films. Our work analyses the impact of this legislation on the films that addressed the dramatic theme of ETA terrorism; films that could be made thanks to committed support from central and regional governments. It also looks into how these projects were accepted by Spanish society. The films share common elements such as the way the directors distance themselves from displaying a heroic image of terrorists or a one-dimensional point of view on the Spanish police, while passing judgement on the social and economical crisis that coincided with the beginning of the Transition to democracy. Only four out of the twelve films shot during those six years did well at the box office, tripling their official costs. The rest did not elicit much audience interest, although they paved the way for a new generation of film directors and also established to some extent firmer foundations for the film industry, as was the goal of the Decree.


Films, Spain, Film policies, Spanish Transition, Political violence, Terrorism, Economic policy


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