San Sebastián Review: The Wolfman

The traditional International Film Student Meeting at the 65th San Sebastián International Film Festival took place this past  week with short films from international film students screening at Tabakalera, a former tobacco factory and now International Centre for Contemporary Culture.

Amongst them was The Wolfman, Spanish director Lluís Sellarès's film from Barcelona school i'Escola Superior de Cinema i Audiovisuals de Catalunya (ESCAC). The film is an intriguing portrait of a sensitive male character.

The protagonist Nico, played by Spanish musician Nico Roig, is not what you would consider the leader of the pack. Unasure of his role in the relationship with his partner Mar (Mar del Hoyo) - a tough businesswoman - he is the one staying in their new home amidst the woods.

The place is well appointed with all the innovative technical anemities from a robotic vacuum cleaner to a high-end sound system and kitchenware. But instead of complying with his task of unpacking, Nico procrastinates by streaming tutorials of all kinds on YouTube or by strolling through the woods in front of their doorstep. Once he does start unpacking the boxes, he stumbles upon Mar’s fur coat and a new call awakens in him.

Lluís Sellarès creates a humorous and still rarely seen approach to manhood that neither necessarily sees the male as the supplier of the household, nor as the dominant part in a relationship. Instead Nico is trying to find his place in two environments - that of the luxury home and that of the woods - and does not seem native to either of them.

The cowed character of Nico and some technical flourishes lend the short film a playfulness and comic but earnest touch. For example, in the opening dream sequence the screen is spilt in every form and shape which gives it a playful note. An iris shot quotes Looney Tunes and the like and ends an otherwise humiliating moment for Nico as he encounters a wolf in in the woods with a humorous air.

Film Information
Original Title: L'Home llop
Director: Lluís Sellarès
Country: Spain
Year: 2017
Run Time: 22 mins

05 October 2017, by Sabine Kues