Writer: Park Urkijo Alijo, Asier Guerricaechebarria (Screenplay)
Starring: Kandido Uranga, Uma Bracaglia, Eneko Sagardoy, Ramon Agirre, Jose Ramon Argoitia, Josean Bengoetxea
Plot: An orphaned girl discovers that the reclusive Blacksmith is keeping a demon imprisoned in order to avoid paying his debt to the Devil.
Tagline – Not all tales always have a happy ending
Runtime: 1 Hour 38 Minutes
There may be spoilers in the rest of the review
Verdict: Visually Stunning Demon World
Story: Errementari starts when a group of soldiers were eliminated by the mysterious blacksmith Patxi (Uranga) who has a demon Sarteal (Sagardoy) help him in battles. Years later Alfredo (Agirre) comes to visit the local area on behalf of the government in search of the missing gold, where he learns the legend of the blacksmith.
When local orphaned girl Usue (Bracaglia) loses her doll in the Blacksmith’s garden, she must sneak in to retrieve it, here she learns about Patxi and the deal he made with the devil, one he isn’t paying, because he is keeping the demon trapped. To make things worse the whole village believes he is a monster and now they have come to rid the village of their monster.
Thoughts on Errementari
Characters – Patxi is the mythical blacksmith that is known for being deadly, he is a recluse keeping himself locked away from the world, when people try to enter his property, he will defend it. He has made a deal with the devil, on that he hasn’t repaid, he does only want the good for the locals. Usue is the orphaned girl living in the village, the is often bullied and isolated. She ends up learning about Patxi kind nature being the only one in the village that will see him in this light. Sartael is the demon that Patxi has held captive, he will perform tricks to get out, though his failure to take the soul has placed him in the bad books in hell itself. Alfredo is the government man that has arrived in the village, he wants the gold being held by Patxi after years of having it hidden away.
Performances – Kandido Uranga as the blacksmith does make for an imposing presence in the film which is needed for his character. Uma Bracaglia brings the innocence needed for her role in the film. Eneko Sagardoy makes the demon looks and act just as playful and evil as you would expect. Ramon Agirre fills the government role being a character you believe would be about greed.
Story – The story does feel like a Spanish fairy tale, having a pact with the devil, a figure surrounded in mystery, an orphaned child and village that has been waiting to take out the so-called problem. This added together does make everything come together nicely to give us the darkly side to the fairy tale. We do get to see this style of fairy tale in other films like ‘Pan’s Labyrinth’ which brings a young girl into a world she isn’t prepared for. You can see elements of ‘Beauty and the Beast’ in how the blacksmith is treated and how he wants to be left alone in the world, while the idea of the pact never being complete adds to the complex side of the story.
Fantasy/Horror – The fantasy world we are entering is filled with demons in the real-world ready to take souls. The horror comes from how the blacksmith is portrayed to the villagers, the vision of hell and the traps around the house.
Settings – The film keeps the settings in the small village and it surroundings including the remote house the blacksmith lives, the vision of hell is also a highlight because it makes the scenes felt relentless.
Special Effects – The effects are used mostly for the demons and the vision of hell, they feel unique with this.
Final Thoughts – This is an enjoyable fantasy horror that once again show the idea of Spanish fairy tales having a darker tone, it has strong visuals and a final sequence that will leave you wanting more.
Overall: Darkly enjoyable fairy tale.