Volver (2006) Script

Put some stones in the vase, or it'll fall over.

This bloody wind!

Polish the letters well.

There are so many widows!

The women here live longer than the men.

Except poor Mom.

Mom was lucky.

Raimunda, don't say that!

She died in Dad's arms, and she loved him more than anyone.

Burned to death!

That's the worst way to die.

They were asleep.

They didn't even realize.

Even so, how can you say something like that?

Hello, Agustina.

See you later, Agustina.

-Good morning, Manola. -Good morning.

-ls that everything, Mom? -l'll get the rest.

This is wonderful!

Good Lord!

-ls this Paula? -Of course.

She's all grown up!

Give her a kiss.

She's got your father's eyes.

-How are you? -Not good.

Don't say that. l want to give my grave the once-over.

With this wind, you can't keep it clean.

-lt looks lovely. -Cleaning it relaxes me. l often come and sit here on my own, and time goes by.

We're going now, we have to see Aunt Paula.

Come and see me afterwards.

Sure.

How's Paco?

He's fine. He stayed in Madrid, working.

Mom, does Agustina really come and clean her own grave?

Yes, it's the custom here.

They buy a plot and look after it all their lives, like a second home.

-That freaks me out! -lt's tradition here.

-Shall l drive? -Yes.


Aunt Paula!

Who is it?

Raimunda!

-Don't take all day. -Don't rush me. l don't like going back in the dark.

Be nice to Auntie, don't laugh at her.

All right.

This house still smells of Mom.

How are you, Aunt?

You're very thin! Have you had the baby?

Fourteen years ago.

Doesn't time fly!

And who are these?

Who do you think? Sole and my Paula!

The same name as me!

And Sole.

Shall we go into the dining room?

That Sole looks like a right sourpuss.

For heaven's sake!

The wind carried the cinders to the bushes.

The result is the most tragic fire in the last 13 years.

-Mind if l turn it off? -No, l can't see it anyway.

Fires are dreadful.

That's how your grandparents died.

Why did l come in here? l don't know.

-To talk? -No.

-To get some food? -Yes!

Look in the sideboard. l'm very shaky on my pins.

Look, wafers!

Just like Mom's. Eat up.

How was the cemetery?

Your mother is delighted.

Did you scrub the headstone properly?

Of course.

She likes it to be clean. lf she could, she'd clean it herself.

But, of course, she can't.

Of course, she can't.

Don't you feel lonely in this big house?

No.

You'd be better off in a home, where you'd be looked after. l'm fine as l am. l'm going to the bathroom.

Well, go!

You can't live on your own. l'm worried about you.

How do you manage your meals?

Very well.

Agustina brings me bread, your mother does the cooking, and if l need anything l call the store and they bring it. l'm fine.


What a lovely touch!

Look! lt's got your name on it.

Shall we go?

Yes.

We're leaving now. l'm so shaky on my pins.

Don't get up.

How could l not get up?

Next time l come back, l'm taking you home with me.

Yes, next time.

What matters is that you come back.

You've gotten very wobbly.


Take care of yourself. l will.

Mind how you go!

We'll do that. l love you lots!

-Shall we go to Agustina's? -Yes.

Come in!

Well?

How did you find your aunt?

-Bad. -Terrible.

She's gotten very shaky. l don't know how she copes.

She does very well without going outside.

She eats a stick of bread every day.

She leaves the money for me.

Let's go onto the patio.

She's in an awful state, love.

She doesn't know what year it is.

She talks about Mom as if she were still alive.

For her, she isn't dead.

She can't accept it.

Sit down for a while. l'd like to pay you something to look in on her every day. l won't accept anything! l'm very happy to do it. l'd take her home, but l'd have to throw my husband out to make room.

But we have to do something.

Every morning, before l go shopping, l tap on her window and l don't move until she answers me. l keep an eye on her. l really appreciate that. l like to think someone's doing that for my mother, wherever she is.

Look! Wasn't she cutting edge then?

The only hippie in the village.

Look at her plastic jewelry.

They're awesome!

First-rate plastic.

Every time l smoke a joint l think of her.

That's a fine example you're setting for Paula!

There's still no news?

Nothing. lt's like the earth swallowed her up.

And your sister Brigida?

Her?

She's in Madrid, she's a big hit on trash TV.

Mom, l'm out of credit!

Good, we'll get a break from the telephone.

You can use mine.

-She'll bankrupt you. -ln that case, no.

As l was saying, Brigida is on so many shows she can put a deposit on an apartment in Madrid.

And she's going to make a record.

She always liked singing.

So did this one.

Remember when you and she, you must've been thirteen, went to an audition for child singers?

Hey, you never told me that! lt was your granny's idea. She was up for anything.

Talking of mothers, maybe yours hasn't shown up so as not to ruin your sister's career.

No.

Mom would love to be on television.

She'd go crazy.

Want some?

No, no, no. l grow it myself. Look at the plants.

We have to leave.

Yes.

Did you report her disappearance to the police?

Brigida thinks it isn't necessary.

She's said it so often on TV.

Yes, but you have to report it to the police, not say it on TV. l don't know. ln any case, it's not the first time she's left home.

But never for so long. lt's been over three years.

Don't give up hope.

And take care of yourself, you don't look well.

Your oleander looks wonderful.

Yes, it didn't get aphids this year.

But l've really lost my appetite.

Maybe it's the joints.

No, if it weren't for them, l wouldn't eat at all.

Your father's eyes.

A joint makes me feel a bit hungry, and it relaxes me.

Safe journey!

Guess what l saw upstairs beside the bathroom?

What?

An exercise bike.

That freaks me out!

Why would Auntie want a bike if she can't walk?

Exactly, she's lost her mind.

Don't talk like that about her.

She didn't even recognize us. lt's the wind.

That goddamn East wind here drives people crazy!

The wafers are delicious.

How can she bake those when she's as blind as a bat?


Hello, Regina.

Going to work?

Got no choice, love.

Why not give her a lift?

Where are you going?

To the club. lf you drop me in the center that'd be great.

-All right. -Thanks.

See you later.

-Hi, Dad. -Hi.

Hello.

Well?

Did you have fun? ln the cemetery? You kidding me?

Were you having a party?

Me? What do you mean?

Paula, sit properly. Close your legs!

Will you bring me another beer?

Are you kidding?

Go on, please.

Haven't you had enough? You have to work tomorrow.

l'm free tomorrow, and the day after, too.

How come? l was fired.

Hang on.

Christ Almighty! l'll get a job on Sundays, it's my only free day. l'll get a job.

But let me watch the game in peace.

You can forget about soccer.

There'll be no more cable.

We're a poor family, and we'll live like one.

Paula, put that phone down!

Your supper's here if you want it.


Are you angry?

No. l'm worried about my aunt.

She's worse than ever.

She didn't even recognize Paula and Sole.

-l don't know how she manages. -But she does.

Leave me be.

What's wrong? l'm worn out, and l have to get up early. l'll do the work.

Don't be a pest!

Don't call me a pest.

Sorry.


What are you doing here?

Waiting for you.

What for?

l called you loads of times to tell you to buy bread. l don't suppose you thought to buy any.

No.

You're soaked.

How long have you been here?

A while.

Where were you? With your pals?

No. l wasn't anywhere.

Why didn't you answer the phone?

What's wrong?

ls something wrong?

Tell me, what's happened?

Where's your father?

He's...

Where?

ln the kitchen.

What happened? l was in the kitchen with my back to him, and suddenly Dad jumped on me.

He was drunk. l asked him what he was doing, and he said he wasn't my father. l pushed him away.

But he got up and put his arms around me.

l pushed him again.

He unzipped his pants.

He kept saying that it wasn't wrong and that he wasn't my father!

l took a knife from the drawer and l threatened him, but it was only to scare him.

He didn't believe me.

He said l wouldn't dare and he jumped on me.

What are you going to do?

l don't know.

Go and change, or you'll get pneumonia.

Remember, l killed him, and you saw nothing, you weren't here. lt's very important you remember that.


Don't open!

Who can it be? l don't know.

Go to your room.

Raimunda, it's me, Emilio.

Coming!

Hi there. l'm sorry, l know it's late, but l'm going to Barcelona tomorrow. l want to give you the restaurant keys in case anyone comes to see it. l don't mind, it's just l'm never at home.

What about Paco? He's always here.

Paco...

He finally got a job. He's starting tomorrow.

Are you hurt?

Women's troubles.

But now that l think about it, with Paco working l'll have more free time.

-Give me the keys, l'll sort it out. -Here.

This is my brother's home number.

The other is my cell phone.

-You're leaving tomorrow? -ln the morning.

Tell me, how much are you asking? l always liked your restaurant. lt's a pity you didn't like the owner, too.

Emilio, please...

For the lease, five million, but it's negotiable.

We'll miss you.

And l'll miss you girls.

-Good luck. -Thanks.

-ls Emilio leaving? -Yes.

Go back to your room. l want to be with you.

You'll have to help me later.

Don't answer!

lt'll be one of your pals.

Answer it, tell them you can't talk.

This is no time to be calling.

l can't talk...

What do you mean? lt's your Aunt Sole.

Put your mother on. lt's Aunt Sole.

Tell her l'm busy.

She's busy now.

Put her on, it's important.

Take the phone, Mom.

Sole, l've got a pile of ironing, and l was out working all afternoon.

Agustina rang.

Aunt Paula is dead.

When?

A little while ago.

Aunt Paula is dead.

Just a minute ago l was thinking of bringing her here.

She died all alone!

Don't cry, pet.

Listen, Agustina said we're not to worry.

She and Squinty will lay her out before we get there.

Auntie had everything organized.

She even chose her coffin and paid for everything. lt's incredible that she was so lucid at the end. l can't go to the funeral. l'm truly sorry, but l'm very busy.

How can you not go? What will people say? l can't go, not remotely.

You have to go on your own.

On my own?

No way.

You know l'm terrified of the dead.

But you needn't see Auntie. l'll tell Agustina to make sure of that.

And if they ask for you?

Say l've had a gallbladder operation.

Anything. l'll go later, but today it's not remotely possible. l don't understand you. Auntie loved you so much.

And l loved her. l'll explain it to you someday, and that day, you'll flip. l'm flipping now.

Take a tranquilizer. l'm going to take one, too.

And you go tomorrow morning.

All right? l guess...


The door!


Wait!


You stay here. Stay here and keep watch. l hope it hasn't changed since l worked here.


DEEP FREEZE


Stay where you are!

Sorry.

What do you want? ls the restaurant open?

No.

Why?

Give me a hand.

We're shooting a film in the area, and l'm looking for somewhere we can all eat.

Do you know any restaurants around here?

How many are you?

25 and 5... 30.

Come on, help me. l can do it for you, if you want.

We were going to close today.

So, lunch for 30.

At what time?

We stop at 3:30, and we're very close.

Around 4:00?

Yeah.

And tell me, how much?

Ten euros a head.

That's fine. l'm sorry l shouted at you, but you scared me.

-Well, l'll see you at 4:00. -Sure.

Thanks a lot.

lt's 1 0:00!

-Two kilos. -Give me another two kilos.

How much are the potatoes?

1 .60 for four kilos.

Give me eight kilos.

Sure.

Hello, Regina.

Hello, you're carting quite a load! l have to make lunch for 30.

-Could you lend me 1 00 euros? -l'm broke, love. l've just bought a chunk of pork this big. l could use that. l'll buy it from you. lt cost me 1 0.80. lt's all l have! l'll pay you tomorrow. Come on! l'll bring it over to you now.

-Thanks, love. -l'll have to diet today. lt'll do you good.

Hey, lnes! Back from the village? l got here yesterday. How are you?

Did you happen to bring any sausages or chorizo? l certainly did! The sausages are great.

My mother-in-law orders them specially for me.

-l need a kilo or so. -Why's that?

-l have to cook for 30. -Who's coming? l'll tell you later.

Can l buy them? l'll pay you tomorrow.

-Sure, it's no problem. -Thanks.

Did you bring anything sweet? l brought some cookies that melt in your mouth.

With the way your glucose and cholesterol are, l can't believe you brought cookies. lt's my only vice. Three boxes.

You shouldn't eat them.

-What do l do, give them away? -Sell them to me.

At least let me taste them.

You can eat three or four, but don't stuff yourself.

-Bring them round to me, love. -l'll do that.

-Thanks. -Bye, love.

Bye, pet.

HOMEMADE SPANlSH FOOD OMELET AND BLOOD SAUSAGE PORK SALAD

Who'd like some pork? lt's delicious.

You, too?

Some pork? lt's delicious.


Agustina?

ls that you?

Soledad, daughter.

Sole, l have to talk to you.

Sole!

There, there.

Take it easy.

Where is she?

Upstairs, in my mother's room, the best room in the house. l brought her here to give her a better wake.

Thank you so much.

Come on, we're the principal mourners.

Good afternoon. l spoke to your sister.

She's just had an operation.

Yes, what timing.

She said you're not to see the body.

Don't worry, you won't have to.

Say hello to Vicenta's daughter.

We'll let her rest a while, she's very tired.

Come on.

Over here.

lt was late at night. l'd had supper, and l was watching the television. l heard someone knocking at my door. l wasn't sure, but just then l heard the same noise, and l asked, "Who is it?"

And a voice answered, "Agustina." l wasn't afraid. l went outside, but l saw no one. l looked over at your aunt's house, and the door seemed to be open. l thought it was odd, so l went in. l called your aunt, but she didn't answer me.

How could she answer me, poor thing? l went into her room, and l found her there, in bed, as still as a little bird! lt was her spirit that warned you.

But was it Paula's spirit or the other one's?

One of the two. l can't say who it was, l didn't see.

But just as l'm listening to you now, someone or something warned me that Paula had died, and opened the door so l could go in.

Come into the kitchen.

l bet you haven't eaten yet.

No.

Not since last night, but l'm all right. l thought as much.

This'll do you good.

Don't give me any more. That's enough.

What did the women mean? lt was just talk.

You know what villages are like.

They were talking about my mother.

Some people say they've seen her.

They say she came back to look after your Aunt Paula.

Has she not appeared to you?

No. What about you?

No, but those things happen. l know.

My grandfather, God rest him, appeared to my grandmother.

At first she was frightened.

Eat up!

Then she asked him what he wanted, and his spirit told her there was a promise he hadn't fulfilled.

She carried it out, and the whole village went with her to the cemetery, where they left my grandfather so he'd rest in peace.

And he never appeared again.

That isn't just a story l heard. l lived it.


Do you want to go into your aunt's house in case you want to take anything?

No, Raimunda will come later.

Tell her it went very well and the whole village came. l'll do that. l'm going to miss her so much!

Go on.


Let me out, Sole!

Let me out! l'm your mother. l won't do anything to you.

My mother is dead.

lf you're anything, you're her ghost or her spirit.

Whatever you say, but get me out of here. l'm in the trunk of your car.

Really, Mom, the things you do!

Soledad, daughter, don't be afraid of me. l'm your mother.

Aren't you going to give me a hug?

Now, give me a hand.

Take this.

-Auntie's suitcase! -Yes.

What is all this?

Clothes and some valuables Auntie had.

A good thing l hid them before the neighbors arrived.

Except for Agustina, they all went through everything, but l'd got there first.

You'll have to give Agustina a gift, she's been so good.

Better than your sister.

There was such a fuss when she didn't turn up. lf you'd heard what Squinty said about her!

Thank heavens you came. l'm wrecked after the trip.

-Are you sleeping here? -Yes, where do you want me to go?

What a sight! l'm not surprised l scared you.

Do you still have the illegal hair salon?

That's how l make my living.

-ls that the guest room? -Yes, that's it.

Tomorrow, you can give me a color and a trim.

And l need dark glasses, too. l don't want to be stuck in the house all day. l have to go out.

Nobody knows me here. ln the village, l couldn't even go to the front door. l need a bit of air.

Are you staying for long?

You want to throw me out already?

No, l'm just asking. l'll stay for as long as God wills, if you don't mind.

When you tire of me, you just have to say so.

But for a separated woman, who's better company than her mother?

Unless you've got yourself a sweetie-pie.

No, Mom. l'm alone, like always.

Not anymore.

Answer the phone.

-Are you back? -Yes.

You were out of range, so l rang Agustina.

She said it all went very well.

The whole village came. l've been thinking about you all day. l really wanted to be there.

Hang on, Sole.

300.

-What do I owe for the drinks? -Nothing.

They're on the house.

-Well, tomorrow, same time. -Sure.

-The crew was very happy. -l'm glad. lf you don't mind, and even if you charge more, could the helpings be more generous?

Tomorrow, you'll have food coming out your eyes.

-Great, see you then. -So long.

Sorry, Sole.

Have you got a job in a restaurant, too?

Yes, l've taken over Emilio's place.

Good Lord!

He was sick of it, but that's not the only news.

Paco has left us.

That's why I couldn't go to the funeral.

We were having a row when you rang. l knew something was wrong.

Did he hit you?

Paco wasn't violent.

He's just gone, forever He'll come back, you'll see. l doubt it.

Why are you so sure?

You can tell these things.

Well, so long.

So long.

Bye.

None of the three of us had any luck with men.

Raimunda and l didn't, but you...

Me, what?

Dad adored you.

Raimunda says that you were lucky, you died in the arms of the person you loved most.

Your sister isn't a bad person, but she's got a nasty streak. l was blind about him, and he cheated on me until the day he died!

-What do you mean? -lt's true. l kept that quiet all my life. l never wanted you two to know.

But let's drop it. l don't want to talk ill of the dead.

-ls he going to appear? -l hope not.

And your husband?

What about him?

Might he turn up someday? l doubt it. l haven't heard from him in two years.

All the better. lt'll just be the two of us together.


The pork cost you 1 0?

1 0.80.

-l'll give you an extra 3 euros. -Thanks, love.

And l'll pay you for four boxes of cookies, not three.

Thanks. l don't want you to think l'd cheat you.

Could you help me with this? l can't move it on my own.

-Where are you taking it? -To the restaurant.

You're the expert in removals. Where do we...

Get ahold of it, tip it over, but not all the way.

-Otherwise, we won't get it through. -ls this all right?

Now, straighten up, to the right, more to the right...

-We can't see anything. -l'll guide you.

Careful, it'll come this way.

All the way...

Don't rush it.

Are we at the door?

The elevator is here.

Wait, wait. This has to go in straight. l'll take this end.

You take it.

You're doing fine.

Good Lord! This is tough.

Careful!

Call it from downstairs.

l want them to see we don't use frozen food. lt's all natural, fresh every day.

Over to the corner.

-And the other freezer? -lt's broken.

So you're taking over the restaurant?

Yes, at least until the crew finishes the film.

Then l'll see.

You can count on me. l make great desserts.

And l can serve drinks at night. l don't know if we'll work nights, but l'm counting on you.

-Sure. -And thanks.

Mom...

ls there anything you want me to do?

Cut my hair. l mean, is there anything you left undone in life that won't let you rest in peace?

People always leave things undone, or done badly, and l'm no exception.

But l don't know if they can be fixed.

And if they can, it's up to me to fix them.

My clients will be arriving soon. What'll we do?

Look after them. l'll help you.

But l can't say you're my mother.

They know l'm an orphan. l'll say l'm a foreigner.

A foreigner? From where?

Dominican Republic?

No, there are lots around here, they'd notice your accent.

Chinese?

Madrid's full of Chinese.

Who'd believe you're Chinese?

Something we don't have around here.

Russian!

Do l really look more Russian than Chinese?

Yes, the Russians are like us.

Look, whatever you hear, keep your mouth shut.

And don't let them see that you understand us. l'll show you how everything works. ln the bedroom, l cut, dry, and color, and here l wash their hair. lf the client is tall, lift this up. lf she's small, put it down.

This towel is to keep you from slipping.

And l keep this here because up above it's very uncomfortable, and if it's down there, l have to bend down so often l wreck my back. l get a lot of backaches, too.

And the shampoo is measured out.

Sit down.

-Are you all right? -Yes.

Just one towel or the client will feel suffocated. l'm the same.

And then, with that same towel, you dry her hair a bit so it doesn't drip down her back. lt's all so well organized. You're very smart, love.

Hello.

She doesn't speak Spanish, she's Russian.

They're in a terrible state. l took her in out of charity.

When l saw her begging in the street, she reminded me of my mother.

Don't trust all the old women you see.

Especially Russians. There are lots of mafias.

People take advantage of you.

Are you getting streaks? Sit down here.

-Wash hair. -Yes.

She was a hairdresser in Russia.

How do you communicate?

With signs. She understands everything. She's sharp.

She'll speak Spanish in no time.

Yes, look at all the top models who are Russian.

Heavens!

-So, Russian? -Russia.

The water, not hot, not cold.

Very good.

Hello.

Hey there.

We have a day off tomorrow.

Then we'll have one, too. We need a break.

And we finish up next week.

We wanted to have the wrap party here.

Great.

Do you want a sit-down meal or a buffet?

A buffet would be great.

And we'd like to have the terrace just for us.

That's no problem.

Don't look at me like that, you make me nervous.

Same here.

Go and have a drink, l'm working.

All right.

She's been strange since she came back from the village. lf she asks you about Paco, you know nothing.

And it's true.

The less you know, the better.

And above all don't keep thinking about it.

Hello.

-Are you with someone? -No.

-l'm going to the bathroom. -What for? l'm dying to piss. lt's broken. l'm waiting for the plumber. l'll throw some water down, for Christ's sake! l have to piss.

Hello!

What's wrong with you?

-l'm at a difficult age. -You're not the only one.

-l'm going to trim your hair. -No, l know you.

-Just the ends. -Less than a centimeter.

Tell me, has your Dad not come back?

No.

He said goodbye for good.

That's incredible. l just don't understand.

lt smells of farts!

What's your mother up to?

What?

She's such a pain! Ever since she was a child.

And in those days we didn't have a bathroom.

We did it in the yard.

We'd be waiting for her all day.

All day long she'd be in the yard, with the hens.

Raimunda!


This dressing gown... lt's Mom's. l know that.

And the smell?

What smell? ln the bathroom and here. lt's as if Mom had just been here, farting her ass off!

Don't you smell it?

The way she used to fart!

And she could never hide it because she was the first to laugh!

lt's as if l can hear her now.

Don't be silly!

Why did you bring these clothes?

No wonder you have nightmares.

You give away dead people's clothes.

Aunt Paula's suitcase!

The antique dolls!

Herjewel case!

What were you going to do with this?

Nothing.

You were going to keep it.

Really, Sole.

Don't get the wrong idea. l didn't bring the case.

Then why is it here?

When l got to Aunt Paula's house...

What?

l'd never have believed this.

Stealing the few things she had before she was even in the grave.

What a nerve!

Don't go off like that!


We have to buy another fridge.

Why not fix the one in the storeroom? lt doesn't work.

The motor's making a noise. l said no one is to go in there, including you.

The door was open, l went in for a hammer.

Has anyone else been in? l don't think so.

You said you'd got rid of him. l wasn't able to.

You think l like having him in there?

Get dressed, everyone will be arriving soon.

Why are you still like that?

-l'm not in a party mood. -Neither am l, but it's work.

Don't be such a lazybones.

Come on, pet, l'll help you.

What's wrong? l can't forget about it when he's so near, in the storeroom.

That's the best way to go crazy, and to drive me crazy, too.

You don't know what it's like to have killed your father.

Paco wasn't your father.

Don't lie to me anymore. l know you're doing it for me, but please don't lie. l'm not lying.

He recognized you as his daughter, but he knew he wasn't your biological father.

So was he telling me the truth?

Yes.

But that doesn't justify what he did.

l promise l'll tell you everything another time.

What's the point of sitting here?

Who was my father?

A guy in the village.

Do l know him?

He's dead.

l'll tell you everything. l swear. l'll hold you to your word.

-Two mojitos! -Coming up!

What about you, love? Another two?

With lemon. lt's perfect.

We need more glasses. l can hardly keep up. lsn't Paula looking pretty?

Here.

Thanks.

How delicious! l can't take any more. They're really good.

With your cleavage and my mojitos, we'd make a fortune.

We should start working nights and try to liven up this lousy neighborhood.

We'll talk about that. First, we have to keep this lot happy.

Have a mojito!

Keep down, they mustn't see you! l'd like to see Raimunda and Paula.

The other day, l only saw their feet.

And look at the fuss you caused! ls that the restaurant?

She said it was going well, but l never imagined this!

She deserves it.

She's had a hard time.

Stay in the car and don't let anyone see you.

No one can see me here!


What are you doing here?

This is great! l've brought you Aunt Paula's things. l didn't know about the party. lt's a film crew celebrating the end of the shoot. l've been catering for them.

Let's put the suitcase away.

Why did you bother? l'd never have kept anything ofAuntie's, much less hidden it from you. l know that. l'm sorry for what l said. l always shoot my mouth off.

Hello, Auntie.

-You want anything? -No.


I can see the twinkling of the lights in the distance That are marking my return Remember?

How could l forget? lt's so long since l heard you sing! l've never heard her sing.

Really?

Really, never.

-Would you like to? -What do you think? Of course!

Come on!

l can't believe it.

Sit there.

Be quiet!

Sit down! This woman's going to sing!

Good evening. l'd like to thank the crew for the work you've given us these past weeks.

Thank you so much. l haven't sung for a very long time, but l'll do it tonight and see how it goes.

I'm afraid of the encounter With the past that's coming back To confront my life Your grandma taught her that song for the audition for child singers.

I'm afraid of the nights That, filled with memories Enchain my dreams But the fleeing traveler Sooner or Iater must come to a haIt And even though oblivion Which destroys everything Has killed my old illusions I still retain a humble hope hidden away And that is all of my heart's fortune Coming back

With a wrinkIed forehead And the snows of time SiIvering my brow Feeling That Iife is an instant That 20 years is nothing That the feverish eyes Wandering in the shadows Seek you and name you Living With my soul clinging To a sweet memory That I weep for again


Autos Amigos.

Good morning. l'm calling because l saw your ad. l need to rent a van.

What kind, and for how long?

The cheapest one you have. lt's just for one day.

Yes?

CouId I speak to Miss Raimunda?

Speaking.

Emilio gave me your number so you could show me the restaurant.

I'm very keen to see it. My name is CarIos.

Well, you should have called earlier because a neighbor has taken it over.

EmiIio didn't teII me that.

That's his strategy, just in case.

CouId I speak to the person who's taken it over?

This is her day off, l'm sorry. lf you call Emilio l'm sure he'll explain everything.

Thank you.

Goodbye.

-HeIIo? -Emilio? lt's Raimunda.

It's great to hear you. Did a man go to see the restaurant?

Yes, but l didn't trust him. l think he wanted it as a front.

For what?

For drugs, or to open a brothel. l don't know.

When l said it wasn't doing well he said that was even better, so...

Why on earth did you say that? l've been meaning to call you for days. l hope you understand. l know it's not the way to do things, but l've taken over the restaurant.

You? What do you mean? l can explain it all to you.

You were out of line, way out of line.

You abused my trust. lt's no excuse, but when the film crew appeared, l was desperate.

And now that Paco's left us, you can imagine...

What? Paco's left you?

Yes. We had a huge fight.

He's gone, and l don't think he'll be back.

He left the same day you went to Barcelona.

How are you coping?

Me? l'm hysterical.

Clutching at straws.

Well, we'll try to sort it out.

Tell me what l owe for the month, and l'll send it to you, but give me a few days.


-Hello? -Raimunda?

Yes, who's that?

It's Agustina. I'm in Madrid and I'd like to see you. lt's difficult, l'm really busy today.

Tomorrow?

No, the whole week is a real mess.

Don't say that. I'm in the hospital.

What's wrong?

I've got cancer. The doctors told me yesterday.

I need to see you.

Tell me what hospital you're in, l'll come today.

I'm in CentraI HospitaI.

God bIess you.

You go up, l'm in a hurry. Give this to your aunt.

-Hello, Auntie. -What are you doing here?

ls that your mother shouting?

Come to the window!

What? l'm leaving Paula with you.

But l'm working. l have to go to the hospital to see Agustina. She's got cancer.

What a pity, the poor thing.

Paula is bringing up Auntie's case. Keep it. l've got to do a few things, and then l'll come back.

Give my regards to Agustina.

-Tell her you saw me! -Yes, nuisance.

Can l come in now?

Yes, love.


How are you?

They opened then closed me up again.

-l knew l had something nasty. -Don't give up hope.

The flowers are lovely!

You shouldn't have bothered. Leave them there.

l have to ask you a favor.

Whatever you want.

Close the door.

Get a chair.

l won't last very long, but l don't want to die without knowing what happened to my mother.

But what can l do?

You can tell me if she's alive or dead.

How will l know?

Ask your mother.

My mother? She's dead!

But she appeared to your Aunt Paula and looked after her until she died.

The whole village knows that. lf she should appear to you, ask her about my mother.

That's all l'm asking.

What you're asking me is crazy.

Did you ever see her with your own eyes?

No.

And you live across the street. l think she hid from me.

But l heard your aunt talking to her a thousand times. lf l hear anything, l'll tell you.

But l think it's unlikely.

You owe me this. lt's all l'm asking. l have to go, l've got lots to do.

Wait, my sister wants to see you. She'll be here any minute.

Some other day, l'm in a real hurry.

She wants you to go on TV.

You know she works on Wherever You Are.

They want to surprise her, and they thought of you.

You were friends as children, and you both went to an audition.

That's enough for several shows, with interviews, music and songs from yesterday, from today and for all times.

Tell her l don't like television.

Neither do l. l'll tell her, but don't forget what l said. l won't.

The Russian loves TV. l don't know if she understands, but she's hypnotized.

There's something about trash TV.

Once l start watching it, l can't stop. l feel worse and worse, but l'm hooked. lt's like a drug. l had to stop watching it at night. l couldn't sleep afterwards.

All that shouting drives you crazy.

Do you like dolls? l like these, they look like they're from a horror movie.

They're very old.

Your mom played with them when she was pregnant with you.

Why didn't mom live with you?

We were very short on money.

Your granddad went to work in Venezuela, l kept Sole, and your mother went to live with Aunt Paula.

What has she told you?

Nothing, she doesn't like talking about that time.

Do you get along well? lt's better now, but at times she's really stroppy, Grandma.

She's got a temper.

How did you get along with her?

When she was little, she was the apple of my eye, but as a teenager, for some reason l didn't know, she grew away from me until l lost her completely.

Your mother didn't love me. lt really hurts when a daughter doesn't love her mother.

That's why, now that it's just the two of you, you have to love her very much, and she has to feel that.

Why have you come back?

Because l was very lonely.

Good afternoon.

Hello. l need eight meters of plastic clothesline and some packing tape.

How much tape?

Four or five rolls.

Very well.

Five rolls.

One...

Two...

And a pick and a shovel.

Very well.


-Great! -Bye!

How are you, Raimunda?

Fed up.

How's Agustina?

Mad as a hatter.

Hi, Mom!

-What's up with you? -Nothing.

Fetch me a glass of water, love.

Do you mind if she stays here tonight?

No, but where will she sleep? ln the spare room.

Paco's coming over tonight. He wants to talk. l'd like us to be alone.

All right.

You're sleeping here tonight.

l'm off. l've got a long night ahead of me.


Hello. l need a favor tonight.

Tonight? Can't it wait until tomorrow?

No, but l'll pay you, like any client.

No, love, for you a discount, but l didn't know you liked pussy. l don't.

So if you don't want to go muff-diving, what do you want? l'll explain on the way.

First, we have to put the freezer in the van...

-What? -And take it to a dung heap.

We can't carry that on our own!

We'll ask the neighbors to help us.

Put on something comfortable.

Like what?

You look like you're going to explode in that.

-Wait! Wait! -Like this! lt sticks out here.

Get it on the sidewalk.

-lt's slipping! -No, it's not.

Get it parallel to that.

Now, up! One, two, three!

Come on! One, two, three!

Push!

lt's in.

Bloody hell.

Did you hurt yourself?

Who needs a spleen, anyway?

Where are we going?

To the Jucar River.

Where's that?

1 80 kilometers away.

1 80 kilometers! lt'll take us all night just to go and come back. l said l'd pay by the hour.

Just to go with you?

To come with me to the river, dig a hole, bury the freezer, and not ask questions.

Look, l appreciate your trust, but my life's complicated enough! l have no job, no papers, l have to work the streets to survive.

Christ, you could have asked me! l'm asking you now. How much?

You should've asked first.

All right, give me the nights.

What nights?

The drinks at night, for a month.

And l keep what l make from my cocktails.

And you buy the bottles.

All right, partner, but not a word about this.

What can l do? l'm your accomplice now.

Just so you know, l haven't killed anyone.

Don't tell me anything. l wasn't going to.


Get out of the way. Give me that.

Oh, my God!

l can't do any more, l'm dead.

Take a break, l'll fill this in.


What are you doing here?

-Can we talk? -l'm really busy.

Come in.

-How are you? -The same.

-Have you found out anything? -About what?

About what l asked you. l didn't think you were serious.

May l sit down?

Have pity on me. l do, all the pity you want, but don't ask crazy things.

All l want is to know if she's alive or dead!

l understand that with the wind and the cancer you've lost your mind, but you can't complicate other people's lives.

We've got enough on our plates.

The day your parents died in the fire, my mother disappeared.

Don't you think that's a strange coincidence?

No, it's just a coincidence.

You said your mother left in the morning and it wasn't the first time she disappeared.

Your grandmother had to raise you because she was never at home.

Don't make me say more.

My mother went off that morning, but it was to join your father in the hut.

That's a lie.

-No one saw her. -Of course not.

She made sure of that.

My mother was having an affair with your father.

What are you saying?

My mother would never have allowed it!

That's why she went to live with your Aunt Paula.

She did that because my aunt wasn't well, but she never left him. She went between the two houses.

You don't know, you weren't there, and you hardly had any contact with your mother for years. l often heard her complain you treated her like shit.

Those were her words.

l've heard a lot of things.

Once l heard a row between your mother and mine.

Your mother told her she could have your father, she didn't care.

And she didn't envy her because he'd been born to hurt the women who loved him.

What are you getting at?

That your parents' death and my mother's disappearance are connected.

Then why haven't you gone to the police?

They ask a lot of questions, and we should wash our dirty linen at home.

That's why l won't go on TV even though my sister is insisting.

You and l have to sort this out.

l have to get back to work.

Think about what l said.

How's Paco?

What?

He's fine.

Shouldn't we call Auntie to say we're coming?

She never goes out.

We should warn her.

Why? lt's not polite just to turn up at someone's house, even if she is your sister.

What's up with you and Sole now? lt's a question of manners.

You and your aunt are getting on my fucking nerves!

You're so vulgar.

What have you brought, Raimunda?

Food for the three of us.

Why did you bother?

Why are you shouting? Are you going deaf?

-Yes, l'm deaf. -Deaf as a post.

We're staying a while, l want you to cut my hair.

Why didn't you call? l've got a client.

Don't worry, l'm in no hurry.

And we have to talk.

-About what? -Aunt Paula's house.

-May l go and watch TV? -Yes, go on.

We have to sort out all the paperwork.

Grandma! l'm here.

Don't make a sound, my mother's here. l heard her.

Where's the Russian?

-Who's the Russian? -A woman who's helping me. l was telling her about my son being expelled again.

He slashed the tires of the priest who teaches him religion. l was telling her, and she left me talking to myself with my hair half-washed.

She must have gone out. l don't know, but she went off like a shot. l'll finish you off.

She's got claustrophobia, and at times she needs to go outside.

Some help she is.

Do you pay her?

No, l took her in.

She eats and sleeps here. l gave her Mom's clothes. l don't like you taking in people you don't know.

We told her that. People take advantage of her.

Look at the Russian. She's living in luxury here.

How was Paco the other night?

Unpleasant. He came to get his clothes. l think he's living with someone, but l couldn't care less.

Why didn't you tell me you had a Russian? l guess l forgot.

That's Agustina! wherever you are Good afternoon, Agustina.

Good afternoon.

We know from your sister that your mother was a single parent.

My mother was a hippie.

That's Agustina!

She never married.

So she practiced free Iove.

Your mother had a friend who died the same day she disappeared.

Yes.

How did she die?

In a fire.

There are lots of fires in my village, because of the East wind.

Agustina's village is the wonderful Alcanfor de las lnfantas, which, according to statistics, has the highest rate of insanity per inhabitant.

Do you think that perhaps your mother was mentally unbalanced?

No, when my mother wasn't well, as she was a hippie, she'd leave the village.

Until one day she left and never came back.

Yes, that was almost four years ago.

And that friend?

We're very interested in that friend who died the same day your mother disappeared. TeII us about that.

About what?

We'd like you to tell us about the woman who died in the fire.

-You know there are rumors... -I don't beIieve in rumors.

I'd like you to explain what you told our producer.

It was something important about that woman and her husband that Iinked them to your mother's disappearance.

Is that true?

I'd rather

not taIk about that.

Those were suppositions of mine.

But you're here to talk about that woman and your mother.

I've changed my mind. she can't believe her sister What's wrong? You look uncomfortable, a bit nervous. l'd like to explain that Agustina is also here to tell us that she's got a terminal illness. lsn't that so?

Agustina has got cancer.

You've got cancer.

But don't be nervous, you're among friends.

A big hand for Agustina!

Agustina has got a special wish.

To go to a clinic in Houston.

But to go to Houston, you have to speak out.

Remember, you made a commitment to this channel.


Agustina came to see me.

She did?

She insists that Mom appears to us.

She wants me to ask her about her mother.

She also said that when she disappeared, her mother was having an affair with Dad.

Do you know anything about that?

No.

Well, Mom told me, after...

After what?

After she found out.

Look at me.

Are there things l should know and don't?

Oodles.

But if l tell you, you'll be annoyed or you won't believe me. l promise l'll believe you and l won't be annoyed.

Mom's been appearing all the time.

To whom?

Sit down.

She was with Aunt Paula until she died. lt was she who called Agustina and opened the door so she could find the body.

She put out the money so they'd bring her bread and left everything paid for the funeral.

Did you do all that?

Yeah.

Did Agustina tell you all that?

You don't believe me.

Agustina is crazy!

Last time we saw Auntie you said yourself it was incredible that she could live like that, with her mind gone and half-blind.

Remember?

Yes, l do, but what are you saying?

That she wasn't alone.

Who do you think made the wafers and put them in tupperwares, one for each of us?

Who do you think took the dolls and Auntie's valuables before the neighbors swiped everything?

Now do you understand?

Have you seen her?

Yes.

ls she, by any chance, the Russian?

Yes.

Where is she?

ln there.


Mom!

What are you doing down there?


Weren't you dead? l've come back to ask you to forgive me. l knew nothing about it. l never even imagined it.

Come on, Paula!

My little girl!

The worst is over.

She's seen me, and she didn't reject me, did she?

No.

Did you really come back to ask her to forgive you?

And also to be with you.

Someday you can explain it all to me.

Yes, and that day l hope you understand me and that you forgive me, too.


l have to talk to her.

Why don't we go back?

Now?

Sure.


-l've dreamt about this so often. -So have l. l don't know where to begin.

You're not a ghost, are you? You're not dead.

No, love, l'm not.

That's such a relief.

But even if l had died, l'd have come back to ask you to forgive me for not seeing what was going on. l was blind. l found out the day of the fire.

Had you really left Dad?

Yes. l couldn't stand his cheating.

The afternoon of the fire, you rang and spoke to Auntie.

As usual, you didn't ask for me. l got angry and told your aunt you were heartless.

As l kept badmouthing you, your aunt defended you and told me everything.

That your father had abused you, that you'd gotten pregnant, and that Paula is your daughter and your sister. l couldn't believe it.

How could such a monstrous thing happen in front of me without me realizing it?

Then, l understood everything. l understood your silence and why you grew so distant. l understood why your father went to Venezuela.

He couldn't cope with the shame of what he'd done. l understood why, after marrying Paco, you went to Madrid and wanted nothing to do with us. l hated you for not noticing anything.

And you were right, love.

When l found out, l was like a wild thing. l went to the hut, ready to scratch his eyes out! l found him asleep with Agustina's mother, both of them worn out.

They didn't see me. l set fire to the hut. lt was a windy day, and in no time the flames had devoured everything.

They didn't have time to wake up.

The ashes in your grave are those ofAgustina's mother?

Yes.

Afterwards, l wandered the countryside for a few days, hiding, like an animal. l was going to give myself up, but first l went to Paula's house to see her.

She was in a terrible state.

When she saw me, she wasn't at all surprised. l came from the past, where she was living.

She greeted me as if l had just gone out the door.

With the tragedy, she lost what little reason she had. l couldn't leave her on her own, so l stayed and looked after her until she died.

ln the village they think you're a ghost.

That's the good thing about such superstitious places. lt was easier for me to go along with them than to speak the truth. l thought l'd be arrested. l never imagined that no one would investigate or punish me, although all this time l swear l've been in a living purgatory.

Never better said.


lt's too early to go to the village.

We shouldn't arrive in daylight.

Why don't we drive by the river? lt's been so long since l saw it. lt's not what it was. lt's dry.

How do you know?

Because there's a drought all over Spain.

Don't you know?

We used to come here for picnics. Remember, Raimunda?

Yes.

There was more water then. l told you it was dry.

Shall we eat something?

Not for me.

-l'm going to eat a wafer. -Me too.

This was your father's favorite place.

Paco's?

Yes. lt was the only thing he missed.

This river.


l'm glad he's resting here.

Come on. Nobody'll see you now.

lf Paula were alive and could see us now, all together, she'd be so happy.

Have you always had such a big chest?

Yes, since l was little. l remembered you having less.

Have you had anything done?

No! What a thing to say!

All right.

Grandma, did you ride the bike?

Yes, half an hour every day. lt's good for blood pressure and the heart.

What did Aunt Paula say?

She roared laughing.

Bye.

lt's Aunt Paula...

Don't start. l'll get it.

Hide Mom's plate and cutlery.

-Who is it? -Agustina.

We're having supper. We've just arrived. l'm sorry to bother you.

Don't stay out there.

Thank you.

Good evening.

-Sit down. -Thank you.

l came to apologize about the show.

You shouldn't have done it. lt wasn't right. l know that. lt's no excuse, but they offered to take me to Houston.

They cure everything there.

But l couldn't do it. l'd rather die alone in my house, but at peace, and able to look you in the eye.

-Mom, l'm going to bed, all right? -Yes, go on.

-Will you have some supper? -No, thanks. l heard you're going to sell the house.

We'd thought about it, but now we're here...

There are so many memories.

Well, l have to go.

Why don't you stay a while? l have to go to the nurse to get my injection. ln Madrid they told me to learn to do it myself, but it gives me the creeps.

Your sister is unforgivable. Leaving you alone like this.

Don't even mention her.

As l didn't say what they wanted on television, she's not speaking to me.

She's very angry with me. But l'm even angrier with her.

With good reason. l envy you two.

You're so close.

lrene! l've longed to see you.

Here l am. l heard about your problem, and l can imagine how lonely you are.

Very lonely.

lf only Paula were here... l'm here to look after you.

You left the door open.

Don't worry, l closed it.

Did you go to the nurse?

No, l'm very tired. Tomorrow.

Tomorrow you'll be in a lot of pain.

Have you got the medicine and the needles?

Yes, l bought it all in Madrid.

Good, l'll give you the injection.

l was born in this bed.

My mother slept here.

And in this bed we held your sister Paula's wake. l know, and l'm so grateful.

We have to talk, lrene.

About everything you want.

But don't tell anyone l've come back.

Don't worry.

Thank you for not talking about me on television. lt's our own business.

That's right, and no one else's.


Mom, it's me, let me in!

What are you doing here? Come in. l missed you.

-Are you going to stay here? -Yes, until the end.

Agustina is very ill.

After what l did to her mother, the least l can do is look after her until she dies. l have so much to tell you. l haven't told you about Paco or what l've done. l'm dying to hear everything, but go away now. l'll see you every day. Between us we'll manage.

Yes.

l need you, Mom.

l don't know how l lived all these years without you.

Don't say that. l'll start to cry, and ghosts don't cry.