<i>Ausentes</i>: shining a light on horror

Ann Davies

in Daniel Calparsoro

Published by Manchester University Press

Published in print February 2009 | ISBN: 9780719073649
Published online July 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781781702093 | DOI:
Ausentes: shining a light on horror

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This chapter discusses Ausentes, which turned Calparsoro from the war film to another genre, horror. The horror film has had a fairly large input from the United States but, unlike the war film, Hollywood does not possess a virtual monopoly on the horror genre. This version of horror has now become more prominent than the parody of directors such as de la Iglesia and Segura, as the demands of audiences and critics here coincide. Much of the critical reaction to the film focused on what was perceived as too close a homage to earlier horror film. The criticism of Calparsoro as slavishly copying horror classics on the part of the Spanish critics neglects the fact that horror is a particularly self-referential genre in which earlier horror films are knowingly quoted. Calparsoro himself lays proud claim to the recycling of horror elements, arguing that such recycling is positive, and refutes the idea that everything must be original. The critics do, however, appear to treat Calparsoro as an auteur to the extent that he is also judged in terms of his own work: Huerta, for instance, compares Ausentes to Calparsoro's previous work rather than to other horror filmmakers such as Balaguero or Amenabar.

Keywords: Ausentes; Calparsoro; horror; Spanish; filmmakers; Segura

Chapter.  8159 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Film

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