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© 2015 ELS FILMS DE LA RAMBLA S.A. ||  VENTURA PONS

Berenguer wants to be an actor. He fights with all his strength, but it’s not an easy profession for youngsters. 

 

An accident will knock him down. In Los Angeles, he will search a secret buried during many years.

 

Will this trip changed his fate, his way of understanding the world and the land where he has been born and his own life? 

2016
OH, WHAT A JOY!
OH, WHAT A JOY!

SYNOPSI

Berenguer wants to be an actor. He fights with all his strength, but it’s not an easy profession for youngsters. His grandfather, an authoritarian patriarch is against his "wrong passion": he only enjoys bringing home young mulato girls. 

 

An accident will knock him down. In Los Angeles, he will search a secret buried during many years.

 

Will this trip changed his fate, his way of understanding the world and the land where he has been born and his own life? It will be a short and powerful emotional journey full of smiles and some tears.

 
OH, WHAT A JOY!
VO/
OH, WHAT A JOY!
OH, WHAT A JOY!
 
OH, WHAT A JOY!

NOTES OF DIRECTOR

COMEDY, COMEDY!

I’ve often written about my pleasure of making comedies.  I’ve done plenty of them!  And maybe I am repeating myself, but this is what I think.  Comedy is the great challenge, the genre which, no matter where you go, attracts more audiences than drama, even though it lacks social recognition. That’s a fact.

 

In any country, even more in ours, making people laugh is considered a minor art form, whereas tears are given the seal of quality.  Despite my lifelong fondness – inherited from the theatre – for free-form and unconventional narrative, I’ve always been attracted to all genres, and I don’t mind jumping from one to the other, from drama to comedy, from fiction to documentary, as long as I feel passionate about what I’m telling and that my point of view underlies the narrative.  The eye of the director.

 

A long time ago I discovered that filming comedies, besides being conceptually difficult, the story must be built like a time bomb there must also be lots of passion. And at the same time, by the very nature of the genre, they become tremendously finely-tuned weapons in the hands of the directors… That is if they really have something to say.

 

Comedy, in its various forms, gives room for a high level of provocation, difficult to imagine in a drama.  A fact to be kept in mind when one is looking for a theme. Drama or comedy?

 

In “Oh, what a Joy!” the young protagonist objective is to become a successful actor, despite  the many difficulties all young people come up against in the artistic world.  He wants to show himself, his friends and family that there is another life, far away from his small town and family traditions, dominated by an over-powering grandfather who’s even older than Methuselah, and who leaves much to be desired. As do the routine and limited opportunities found in a big capital like Barcelona.

 

But finally, after 1001 adventures, by chance – oh beloved chance! – he discovers through a series of coincidences some news which will bring about a huge change in his life.  From one day to the next the boy suddenly finds himself with a ticket to travel to Hollywood, where within six days and five nights he has to discover all by himself a secret, a secret with a strong identity and emotional burden, buried for many years and which seems to have been rescued from oblivion by his best friend.

 

A very important person, whose existence was unbeknown to him, has been living in silence for a long time on the other side of the ocean.  A jewel which has been shining for many years far away from him, with a DNA which unites them, has now surfaced to shine even more in his hands

 

Will this trip to California be the one to change his destiny, his way of understanding the world, the land which gave birth to him, and who knows, maybe even his own life?  Probably.  But it will definitely be a short, sharp emotional trip, full of smiles and possibly also the occasional tear.

 

Considering that the narrative interest of my earlier work has wandered through more transcendental, more dramatic issues, I’ve once again felt the call of comedy.  Maybe because I believe that the spectators will be able to find a good story within the experiences of this couple.  A good story, yes! the mother of all movies, giving me the chance to rely upon a cast  whom I believe in blindly.  Or maybe because I was fascinated by the possibility of making a symbiosis with a type of humor based upon these people, so different, close-by and far away, fragile deep down and their daily battle for life in worlds so utterly different.

 

It is the sum total and pleasure of all of this, added to the concept of  staging and acting, the emotion and tenderness of these beings, set in unique landscapes, and who, like in so many other of my movies, want to find themselves and communicate in the midst of the maelstrom of the times we live in.

 

Back to comedy! What a pleasure! Wow!  

 

Tragedy tomorrow, comedy tonight!

VENTURA PONS

 
OH, WHAT A JOY!

A production of ELS FILMS DE LA RAMBLA, S.A.

Director,  Writer and Producer :  VENTURA PONS

Co- Writer :  RICARD FARRÉ

Production Director :  XAVI DOMÈNECH

Director of Photography :  ANDALU VILA-SANJUAN / TITO ARCAS

Director of Photography US 2ª Unit :  ANDREA RESMINI

Art director :  BEL·LO TORRAS

Construction sets : THE KRAKEN PROJECT / RICARD VALLVERDÚ

Makeup : ANNA MERINO

Music :  ALBERT GUINOVART, GATO PÉREZ I ALTRES

Film Maker :  MARC FARRERAS

Live Sound :  NATXO ORTÚZAR

 Sound mixing :  XAVI SAUCEDO / POLFORD

Digitals Effects :  NEGRETE FILMS VFX

Subtitles : IMAGINABLES

 

v.o. catalan and a little of english

 

Shooting in Valls, Barcelona, Bellaterra and Los Angeles (EUA)

April, May and June 2016

 

© ELS FILMS DE LA RAMBLA, S.A

 
OH, WHAT A JOY!
 
OH, WHAT A JOY!

Bogotá Film Festival (Colombia)

OH, WHAT A JOY!

Estic molt content d’haver fet l’avi Ramon. Em sembla que ha quedat un personatge molt espontani, natural, vital.  Jo mateix he rigut amb mi mateix, cosa que no m’havia passat mai. Gràcies, doncs, pel regal del personatge.

 

La pel·lícula és pura delícia. D’entrada és una pel·lícula blanca, però de mica en mica van apareixent les càrreges de profunditat que hi ha a dins i arriba a ser una crònica molt eficaç del que ha passat en aquest país els últims anys i com ha arribat al que és ara. I tot això, no amb grans discursos sinó amb una petita, íntima i molt tendre peripècia familiar.

 

Hi ha moltes coses més, per descomptat: el món dels actors que comencen, el repàs –amb molta estimació- d’un Hollywood que ja no hi és, el retrat d’una família que a mi em sembla molt catalana, la proximitat –i la complicitat- que dóna el fet de parlar a càmera… I tot això, amb una netedat impressionant. És com una destil·lació del teu estil. Potser el que més m’agrada és aquesta netedat en tot: en la buidor del quadre, on només hi calen les cares dels actors i prou, la senzillesa i quasi minimalisme dels ambients, etc. I la lluminositat! Hi ha molta llum. Sempre. Tot és clar i net. Tot blanc. Tot directe. 

 

Tothom està molt bé. La Teresa, a mesura que avança es va fent mestressa del personatge, més lliure, més plena. M’ha agradat molt. I el nano, també. La Carulla, la colla d’amics americans, la Moreno, manant i tallant el bacallà, com és habitual en ella… I el Pedro Ruiz!!! M’ha deixat bocabadat! Extraordinari! Tot un recital! Un gran encert!

JOSEP MARIA POU

Actor and Director.

Me ha encantado, ¡que alegría de película!

MARIA DELGADO

UK

Dear Ventura, 

Thanks, Venttura Pons, for sharing your latest jewel with me. The chronological transition of the photos on the wall in the family dining room is a masterclass in film narrative and a great summary of recent Spanish history. Josep Maria Pou is superb playing the fascist grandfather and through this character you introduce a very interesting subject, the collaboration of some of the Catalan bourgeoisie with Francoism, a subject which would merit a whole film (in scope and in the style of Visconti in my opinion!).





You have always proven that through comedy a lot can be said and many great filmmakers have believed in this axiom, amongst them Billy Wilder, one of my favourites.


I like the variety of issues included in your film, Catalonia's quest for independence, the relationship between Catalans and Valencians, the current state of affairs of the art world and the human aspiration of being true to ourselves.



The connoisseurs amongst us will recognise your fleeting winks to your successful cinema project in Barcelona (Cinemes Texas) and to Ignasi M from your recent documentary.



It is comforting to see that vitality, energy and looking ahead are not traits limited to younger generations. I also enjoyed your well-deserved homage to the classics, which is refreshing rather than nostalgic.



I wish you a very successful premiere of the film.



RAMON LAMARCA

London, UK

”Oh que Joya” es una delicia para quienes amamos el cine. Tantas referencias. Tan divertida. Tan especial.

Henry Laguado

Director Festival Bogota

Des que el 1978 va irrompa en escena amb l'emblemàtic documental Ocaña, retrat intermitent, el barceloní Ventura Pons ha rodat gairebé, una pel·lícula a l'any, de vegades fins i tot dues. Està àmpliament reconeguda la seva habilitat i enginy per combinar ficció i documental fins a aconseguir que els dos gèneres gairebé s'arribin a confondre. De vegades costa discernir on comença la ficció o acaba la realitat, o viceversa, perquè totes dues van de bracet.

Oh, quina joia! suposa un altre desafiament, estilístic i argumental, portat fins a les últimes conseqüències i de què el cineasta, com de costum, surt indemne. El film ret homenatge a la gairebé octogenària Teresa Gimpera. Tot un mite d'aquella Barcelona nocturna, situada una mica al marge de la legalitat i que es revoltava contra les fèrries regles imposades pel franquisme llavors imperant.

Aquells dissidents van formar el moviment de la gauche divine que va immortalitzar el fotògraf Leopoldo Pomés, també autor de les primeres imatges de la jove i cobejada model.

A Oh, quina joia! Teresa Gimpera recrea la figura d'una model i actriu catalana que viu una jubilació daurada a Los Angeles, on va triomfar primer com a model i després al cinema. Allà rep la inesperada visita del seu nét ( Ricard Farré), que no sabia que existís. Aquest retrobament farà que visiti de nou Barcelona i altres localitats catalanes. Una pel·lícula coral i d'estil visual publicitari, amb un repartiment ampli que inclou impagables aparicions de Josep Maria Pou o Pedro Ruiz.

Lluís Bonet Mojica

La Vanguardia

He gaudit com mai. Comèdia intel·ligent i brillant. Impagable la Gimpera i homenatge a l'Ovidi, no té preu. És un patrimoni del països catalans, llàstima que molts d'aquí “meseteros" no s'adonen, ells s'ho perden per les seves bestieses. 

La pel·lícula no té desperdici, la tornaré a veure. Un 10 per a Ventura. Ell és una joia irrepetible!!

Merxe Banyuls

València

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