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Madrid 1987 (2011) - An Intriguing Tale of Introspection and Connection

"Madrid 1987" is a thought-provoking Spanish film released in 2011, directed by David Trueba. Set against the backdrop of Madrid in 1987, the movie delves into the lives of two individuals from different generations who cross paths unexpectedly, leading to a captivating exploration of human connection, introspection, and the complexities of life.

Plot Summary

The film opens with the renowned aging novelist Miguel (played by José Sacristán) preparing to take his own life. He rents a room in a dilapidated building, intending to die there. Simultaneously, Ángela (played by María Valverde), a passionate and ambitious young university student, is struggling with her studies and her personal life.

One night, fate brings these two disparate characters together when Ángela discovers Miguel unconscious in the room she intended to use for her studies. She decides to stay with him and nurse him back to health, but little does she know that this chance encounter will profoundly impact both their lives.

Themes of Introspection and Connection

"Madrid 1987" thrives on introspection and the complexities of human relationships. As Miguel and Ángela spend time together, they engage in deep conversations about literature, love, and life. Miguel, an established writer with vast life experience, begins to impart his wisdom to Ángela, who in turn challenges his views with her youthful idealism and fresh perspective.

Their conversations lead them to question their own identities and beliefs, forcing them to confront their vulnerabilities and prejudices. Miguel's cynicism faces the optimism of Ángela, creating a beautiful interplay of contrasting ideologies. Through each other's eyes, they start to discover new facets of themselves, leading to moments of profound self-reflection.

The Power of Literature

Literature plays a central role in the film, acting as a bridge between the two characters. As a seasoned writer, Miguel is well-versed in the power of words, and his passion for storytelling helps Ángela rekindle her love for literature and writing. Together, they share their favorite books and stories, weaving a strong bond through their mutual appreciation for the written word.

The Decaying Urban Setting

The choice of Madrid in 1987 as the film's backdrop holds significant symbolism. The city serves as a metaphor for the decay that exists within the characters' lives. The crumbling building where they meet reflects the fragmented and crumbling emotional states they are both in. As they navigate the aging structure, they also navigate their past and present lives, acknowledging the imperfections and decay within themselves.

Embracing the Present and the Past

As the story unfolds, "Madrid 1987" subtly addresses the value of embracing both the present and the past. Miguel, struggling with his age and regrets, finds solace in Ángela's company as she forces him to see the world with fresh eyes. Meanwhile, Ángela learns from Miguel's past experiences and gains insight into life's complexities, finding comfort in the knowledge that she is not alone in her struggles.


"Madrid 1987" is a masterfully crafted film that captivates audiences with its profound exploration of human emotions, relationships, and the power of literature. Through the unlikely connection between an aged writer and a young student, the film offers a poignant reminder of the beauty of human connection and the transformative nature of sincere introspection.

As the characters journey through the crumbling streets of Madrid, they also navigate the intricacies of their own hearts and minds. "Madrid 1987" leaves viewers with a sense of hope and the understanding that regardless of age or circumstance, the potential for profound connection and self-discovery exists within each of us.

Madrid 1987 (2011) - info

  • Release date: April 13, 2012
  • Genre: Drama
  • Director: David Trueba
  • Writers: Rafael Azcona, Pío Baroja, Fernando Fernán Gómez
  • Stars: José Sacristán, María Valverde, Ramon Fontserè

Madrid 1987 (2011) - Trailer

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