Elisa & Marcela
|Elisa & Marcela|
|Directed by||Isabel Coixet|
|Written by||Isabel Coixet|
|Starring||Natalia de Molina|
|Music by||Sofía Oriana Infante|
Elisa & Marcela (Spanish: Elisa y Marcela) is a 2019 Spanish biographical romantic drama film directed by Isabel Coixet. Starring Natalia de Molina and Greta Fernández, the film tells the story of Elisa Sánchez Loriga and Marcela Gracia Ibeas, two women who passed as a heterosexual couple in order to marry in 1901 at Church of Saint George in A Coruña becoming the first same-sex matrimony recorded in Spain. It was selected to compete for the Golden Bear at the 69th Berlin International Film Festival. It was released on 24 May 2019, in selected theaters in Spain, and on 7 June 2019, by Netflix.
- Natalia de Molina as Elisa
- Greta Fernández as Marcela
- Sara Casasnovas as Ana
- Tamar Novas as Andrés
- María Pujalte as Madre de Marcela
The film has received mixed reviews.
Jay Weissberg from Variety defined it “a dully made, frequently ridiculous eye-roller shot in standard issue black-and-white that gussies itself up as a brave clarion call for gay rights”, while Lee Marshall from Screen considered Coixet's work “a conventional and predictably plotted period drama (...) [It] misses no opportunity to make forbidden love look as classy as a perfume ad.“  Clarence Tsui from The Hollywood Reporter acknowledged that “wanting to make a point, the filmmaker has delivered a piece devoid of the emotional nuances that made Brokeback Mountain or Carol, to cite two seminal same-sex love stories, such gripping and heartbreaking viewing.“
However there has been discussion amongst critics and viewers alike that some negative responses to the film indicate the discomfort and unfamiliarity of mainstream reviewers in seeing a film that refuses to cater to male-centric tastes, or mimic the dynamic of heterosexual storytelling. David Opie of Gay Essential writes "the passion their characters share is explosive, infusing each of their love scenes with a primal urgency that feels more real than most Hollywood romances. Never obscene for the sake of it, it’s clear that Elisa y Marcela was shot by a female director for a female audience. There’s no male gaze in sight here and rightly so."
- "'Elisa & Marcela' ('Elisa y Marcela'): Film Review Berlin 2019". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 20 March 2019.
- Lothian-McLean, Moya (19 February 2018). "The incredible tale of Spain's first lesbian marriage is being made into a film". Stylist. Retrieved 17 January 2019.
- "Selection for Competition and Berlinale Special Completed" (Press release). Germany: Berlin International Film Festival. 17 January 2019. Retrieved 17 January 2019.
- "Netflix estrena el tráiler 'Elisa y Marcela', la nueva película de Isabel Coixet". El País (in Spanish). 13 May 2019. Retrieved 9 June 2019.
- Weissberg, Jay (13 February 2019). "Berlin Film Review: 'Elisa & Marcela'". Variety. Retrieved 16 April 2019.
- Marshall, Lee (14 February 2019). "'Elisa And Marcela': Berlin Review". Screen. Retrieved 16 April 2019.
- Tsui, Clarence (13 February 2019). "'Elisa & Marcela' ('Elisa y Marcela'): Film Review, Berlin 2019". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 16 April 2019.
- "Gay Essential Review - Elisa y Marcela". The Gay Essential Film Blog. 1 March 2019. Retrieved 6 July 2019.