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The Spirit of the Beehive ( El Espiritu de la Colmena)



Víctor Erice


Six-year-old Ana is a shy girl who lives in the manor house in an isolated Spanish village on the Castilian plateau with her parents Fernando and Teresa and her older sister, Isabel. The year is 1940, and the civil war has just ended with the Francoist victory over the Republican forces. Her aging father spends most of his time absorbed in tending to and writing about his beehives; her much younger mother is caught up in daydreams about a distant lover, to whom she writes letters. The entire family is never seen together in a single shot. Ana's closest companion is Isabel, who loves her but cannot resist playing on her little sister's gullibility. Teresa writes to her past lover while she seems to stare out the window at the old house where Ana will find the republican soldier : ‘’Little but the walls remain of the house you once knew, I often wonder what became of everything we had there’’. This supposes the house has a history for her, and implies the escaped republican soldi

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