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The Name of Christ

Albert Serra
Els noms de Crist
Spain 2010 / 193’
Birdsong The Lord Worked Wonders in Me

This monumental experimental film made up of 14 chapters/stations, whose poetic structure was based on the canonical 1586 book The Names of Christ by a monk named Luis de León, was prepared for an exhibition titled Are you ready for TV?  at the Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art, where a major part of the “action” takes place. Serra deliberately combines elements that don’t belong together: He juxtaposes ironic conversations between characters connected with the artistic milieu with fragments of old texts and scenes from everyday life with symbolic images and found footage. The theme that binds them all together as a whole is the Sisyphean struggle on the part of Serra himself, the film’s director, who is trying to secure financing for the film in order to continue working on it. The obstacles that pile up on the way to achieving that goal seem to have no end, just like his needs. “Do you want more money?” asks the producer. “How much?” “An infinite amount,” answers the director. The crew, if there even is one, falls victim to mysterious plagues, and the artists involved in the project are either burned out or come up with visions that, despite their potential, will never be realized.

Agnieszka Szeffel

Albert Serra

A Catalonian director and producer, was born in Banyoles in 1975. He studied Spanish and Comparative Philology at the University of Barcelona. His second film, Honor of the Knights, a loose adaptation of the story of Don Quixote, appeared in the section Quinzaine des Réalisateurs at Cannes in 2006. Serra’s second film of 2008, Birdsong, found itself in the program Un Certain Regard, a prestigious section of the Cannes festival, and it was also recognized as the best Catalonian film of the year. The new one Liberté received Special Jury Prize of Un Certain Regard.

Selected filmography

2003 Crespiá

2006 Honor rycerza / Honor de cavallería / Honor of the Knights

2008 Śpiew ptaków / El cant dels ocells / Birdsong

2010 Imiona Chrystusa / Els noms de Crist / The Names of Christ

2013 Historia mojej śmierci / Història de la meva mort / The Story of My Death

2016 Śmierć Ludwika XIV / La mort de Louis XIV / The Death of Louis XIV

2018 Roi Soleil

2019 Liberté

Cast & Crew

director Albert Serra
screenplay Albert Serra
cinematography Jimmy Gimferrer
editing Àngel Martín
music Ferran Font, Enric Juncà, Joe Robinson, Marc Verdaguer
cast Victòria Aragonés, Román Bayarri, Lluís Carbó, Jordi Pau, Albert Serra, Lluís Serrat, Montse Triola
producer Albert Serra, Montse Triola
production Andergraun Films
sales Andergraun Films
language Catalan
colouration colour