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The Burned City (1976)

La ciutat cremada (original title)
Historia de Cataluña de 1899 a 1909


Antoni Ribas
2 wins. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Ángela Molina ... Roser Palau
Pau Garsaball Pau Garsaball ... Sr. Palau
Jeannine Mestre ... Remei Palau
Montserrat Salvador Montserrat Salvador ... Sra. Palau
Francisco Casares Francisco Casares ... Frederic
Xabier Elorriaga ... Josep
Adolfo Marsillach ... Francesc Cambó (as Adolf Marsillach)
José Luis López Vázquez ... Enric Prat de la Riba
Ovidi Montllor ... Emiliano Iglesias
José Vivó José Vivó ... Doctor Robert (as Josep Vivó)
Alfred Lucchetti ... Alejandro Lerroux
Núria Espert ... Desarrapada
Joan Manuel Serrat ... Ramón Clemente García
Teresa Gimpera ... Sra. Vallès i Ribot
Patty Shepard ... Sor Engràcia


Historia de Cataluña de 1899 a 1909 Written by Miguel Ángel Díaz González

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Spanish | Catalan | Esperanto

Release Date:

16 April 1981 (Hungary) See more »

Also Known As:

Az égő Barcelona See more »

Filming Locations:

Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain See more »

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Color (Eastmancolor)
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Historical events developed in Cataluña from1899 to 1909 , and especially dealing with the ¨Tragic Week¨
18 October 2016 | by ma-cortesSee all my reviews

This is an epic story about Catalunya and focusing a bourgeoise family formed by Sr. Palau (Pau Garsaball) , Sra. Palau (Montserrat Salvador), their daughters , Roser Palau (Ángela Molina) , Remei Palau Jeannine Mestre) and the uncle Frederic (Francisco Casares) . 1909 , a soldier called Josep (Xabier Elorriaga) comes from the failed Cuban war . He meets the wealthy family and falls in love for Romei Palu and soon after marries her . But Josep is a leftist worker , he belongs to Trade Unions and carries out strikes , blackmails and violent activities . After that , in Barcelona takes place strikes , protests and lock-outs until 1909 when happens the ¨Tragic Week¨ . It is the name used for a series of bloody confrontations between the Spanish army and the working classes of Barcelona and other cities of Catalonia (Spain) , backed by anarchists, socialists and republicans, during the last week of July 1909. It was caused by the calling-up of reserve troops by Prime Minister Antonio Maura to be sent as reinforcements when Spain renewed military-colonial activity in Morocco on 9 July, in what is known as the Second Rif War.

Overlong and slow-moving story based on historic facts about Cataluña from 1899 to 1909 , it requires quite thought and patience but some scenes are really spectacular , particularly the battle images across the Barcelona streets . Exceptional plethora of actors formed by the greatest players of the Spanish cinema . Spectacular production design , though the burning frames are clearly scale models and Maquettes . In the picture appears various historical characters who had important relevance for these years , such as : Prat De La Riva well played by José Luis López Vázquez , Prat was an important member of the cultural and political organization Unió Catalanista, he promoted Catalan nationalism in politics in the Regionalist League . Francesc Cambó nicely performed by Adolfo Marsillach , Cambó only managed to achieve a fusion of the four provincial entities in Catalonia and was elected a member of the Spanish parliament several times, and was twice appointed minister in a Spanish conservative government , his party , the Lliga, was the main representative of the Catalan Regionalist or Nationalist movement . Doctor Robert finely interpreted by José Vivó , Bartomeu Robert was the Barcelona Mayor and combated caciquism , being president of the Lliga Regionalista . And overacting by Alejandro Lerroux interpreted by Alfred Lucchetti and Emiliano Iglesias by Ovidi Montllor , being both of them accused from the acts of vandalism provoked by elements called the Jóvenes Bárbaros (Young Barbarians), who were associated with the Radical Republican Party (Partido Republicano Radical) of Alejandro Lerroux . Support cat is frankly magnificent , including notorious actors such as Núria Espert , José Vivó , Teresa Gimpera , Patty Shepard , Francisco Casares , Mary Santpere and the famous singer Joan Manuel Serrat . The motion picture was regularly directed by Antoni Ribas , being financed by crowdfunding . Ribas attempted to make a historical epic in Bertolucci's Novecento and Visconti style , but here lacks luster and budget . Antoni was a director and writer , known for directing some films about Cataluña history , such as : 1983 Victòria! La Gran Aventura D'Un Poble ; Victòria! 2: La Disbauxa ; Victòria! 3 El Seny i La Rauxa ; Catalans universals (1980) ; Tierra De Cañones (1999) ; Dali (1991) and and this La Ciutat Cremada (1976),

The film shows the historical happenings , specially about ¨Tragic Week¨ (1909) : Minister of War Arsenio Linares y Pombo called up the Third Mixed Brigade of Chasseurs, which was composed of both active and reserve units in Catalonia . Among these were 520 men who had completed active duty six years earlier, and who had not anticipated further service. One could hire a substitute if one did not wish to fight, but this cost 6,000 Reales which was beyond the means of most laborers . The flash-point occurred when "a party of conscripts boarded ships owned by the marques de Comillas, a noted Catholic industrialist, en route for Morocco. The soldiers were accompanied by patriotic addresses, the Royal March, and religious medals distributed by pious well dressed ladies. Spain's narrow social construction was thus on display for all to see, an affluent Catholic oligarchy impervious to the rise of secular mass politics. As the crowd jeered and whistled, emblems of the Sacred Heart were thrown into the sea." These actions, coupled with anarchist, anti-militarist, and anti-colonial philosophies shared by many in the city (Barcelona later became a stronghold for the anarchists during the Spanish Civil War), led to the union Solidaridad Obrera - led by a committee of anarchists and socialists - calling a general strike against Maura's call-up of the reservists on Monday 26 July 1909. Although the civil governor Ángel Ossorio y Gallardo had received ample warning of the growing discontent, by Tuesday workers had taken over Barcelona, halting troop trains and overturning trams. By Thursday, there was street fighting, with a general eruption of riots, strikes, and the burnings of Police and army casualties were eight dead and 124 wounded. Of the civilians, 104–150 were reportedly killed. Over 1,700 individuals were indicted in military courts for "armed rebellion". Five were sentenced to death and executed (including Francesc Ferrer, founder of the Escuela Moderna); 59 received sentences of life imprisonment. Alejandro Lerroux fled into exile. General European condemnation in the press was immediate. King Alfonso XIII, alarmed by the reaction at home and abroad , removed Prime Minister Antonio Maura from power in its wake, replacing him with fellow conservative Segismundo Moret .

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