Cine Las Americas 2018 Review: LA HORA DE LA MERIENDA (TEA TIME)

By Mark Saldana

Rating: 3.5 (Out of 4 Stars)

From Spain, this pleasing and lovable film won the Jury Award for Best Narrative Short of the festival.  Though the film does call for a little suspension of disbelief, I still enjoyed and appreciated the message it offers, and a timely one it is.  The story revolves around Chela a lonely senior citizen who has very little to do in her life.  Though most of her days are uneventful, she does occasionally suffer from stress whenever her troubled daughter visits to ask for money.  To cope with the stress and loneliness, she often finds herself drinking to pass the time. One day she decides to invite her neighbor Elena for tea.  The two bond instantly and become good friends.  Tea time becomes a somewhat regular affair for both Chela and Elena, but there is something about Elena that Chela has yet to discover.

I certainly adored this film and feel that it deserves to reach more audiences.  Unfortunately short films, especially those from other countries don’t reach the amount of people they often deserve.  Director Alba González de Molina presents a delightful and affecting story with this sublime film.  This is a short I feel that teens and adults will enjoy and from which they can learn much, but I also feel that senior citizens will have a greater appreciation for its main character Chela.  I also believe that some of the more traditional and conservative elderly people could also learn much from this film’s modern message.

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