Clara Sola

Magical-realist and lyrical Costa Rican drama about the sexual awakening of a forty-year-old, mentally retarded woman who lives under the yoke of her strict Catholic mother.

Please note that this film is in Spanish, with Dutch subtitles.
Time & Tickets

Clara feels completely in her element among the animals in the yard of her house on the edge of the Costa Rican rainforest. Purple ribbons, however, restrict her movements. Suffering from a hunchback and a developmental disorder, Clara still lives under the protective regime of her mother Fresia, who sees Clara’s syndrome as a sign of God’s providence and attributes healing abilities to her daughter. She also takes advantage of it: Fresia offers her daughter, dressed up for the occasion, to (gullible) believers as a healer who has a direct line to the Blessed Virgin.

The life of the childlike Clara begins to change when she spends some time with Santiago, the boyfriend of her teenage niece Maria. Clara begins to feel sexual excitement for the first time. Both physically and mystically, Clara seems to push her limits and in the search for her true self, Clara increasingly shies away from her role as a saint. The soundtrack – composed by the Belgian Ruben De Gheselle and performed by the Budapest Symphony Orchestra, the string quartet Ma’at and flautist Tille Van Gastel – was awarded the Georges Delerue Prize for best music at the film festival in Ghent.

Nathalie Álvarez Mesén, Sweden, Costa Rica, Belgium, Germany, France, USA, 2021, 106 min. Spanish spoken, Dutch subtitles. With Wendy Chinchilla Araya, Ana Julia Porras Espinoza, Daniel Castañeda Rincón, Flor María Vargas Chavez, Laura Román Arguedas.