The entire plot in Alejandro Amenábar's debut film revolves around so-called snuff films, amateur movies that depict authentic scenes of murder, torture, rape, or other forms of physical violence. One such production provides the point of departure for the Spanish director in his story about a film school student who is trying to find the murderer of a girl whose death was captured on a video cassette that she found by chance. Amenábar's talent can be seen at the level of the construction of the story itself, which, ultimately, follows the easily recognizable rules of the thriller genre. However, Tesis, which garnered seven Goya Awards, is exceptional primarily because of its take on the human fascination with evil, as well as its self-referential considerations of the role and purpose of audiovisual materials.
Goya Awards 1997 - Best Film, Best New Actor, Best New Director, Best Screenplay, Best Editing, Best Production Supervision, Best Sound; Brussels International Fantastic Film Festival 1997 - Grand Prize of European Fantasy Film in Silver; Gramado Film Festival 1996 – Best Actor; Ondas Awards 1996 – Best Director, Sant Jordi Awards 1997 – Best Director
Amenábar is one of Spain’s best-known directors. His feature-film debut, Tesis, which he made at the age of 23, caught the attention of the film world right away. His second film was also a success: Open Your Eyes, which provided the subject for a Hollywood remake several years later. The Others, a Hollywood horror film starring Nicole Kidman, was followed up by The Sea Inside, which won an Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film. His most recent work is the 2009 film Agora.
1996 Teza / Tesis / Thesis
1997 Otwórz oczy / Abre los ojos / Open Your Eyes
2001 Inni / The Others
2004 W stronę morza / Mar Adentro / The Sea Inside