l’auberge espagnole

After having the tastiest mushroom curry for dinner, I saw one of the most beautiful movies today. A French movie.

It starts off dryly. Xavier visits Barcelona under Erasmus programme, to study Economy. Before that, they show a brief relationship of his with his seemingly sweet girlfriend, and hippy mom. He also mentions a couple things about his childhood, like how he wanted to become a writer. They show some more things, and then it starts seeming that he is looking for an escape.

He lands in Spain. He meets strangers he hates to be meeting, but ends up having ties with. When he walks on the new lanes, all pensive, the narration says – Later we will have lived in this city. We will have walked in its streets. We will have been to the end of perspectives. We will have seen all the buildings. We will have lived stories with people. When we will have lived in this city, we will have taken this street 10, 20, a 1000 of times.

He struggles a lot to find an apartment, and finally finds one, which is a pot of cultural mix. That smells of beer, cigarettes, accents, friendship, love, a crazy fridge, deceit, brotherhood, semen, jokes, organization, mess, and sweet music. His first song on the first day in his room is one of my favourite songs, and plays more than once in the movie, making my heart melt.

Beautiful things happen – a lesbian tells Xavier that women are crazy. She also teaches him how to make love to (read, have sex with) a woman. His girlfriend visits him for a day, for nothing really. Flamenco flirting, unlawful lust, jealous and possessive girlfriend, hallucinations, drunken nights, all follow. A year of memories flies past. It makes me draw an analogy – man, a spider, stuck in the web he himself created. A web of thin, transparent, sticky, strong silk.

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