Film notes: Brigada Criminal (1950) directed by Ignacio F. Iquino

ES / 80 minutes / b&w / Producciones Iquino Dir: Ignacio F. Iquino Pro: Ignacio F. Iquino Scr: Manuel Bengoa, Juan Lladó, José Santugini Cine: Pablo Ripoll Mus: Augusto Algueró  Ed: Ramón Quadreny Cast: José Suárez, Soledad Lence, Alfonso Estela, Manuel Gas, Barta Barri, Pedro C. de Córdoba, Fernando Vallejo, Maruchi Fresno, Isabel de Castro, Carlos Otero, Mercedes Mozart Release Date 4 December 1950 (Spain). IMDb rating: 6.1

brigada_criminal-703804119-large Synopsis: Fernando leaves Madrid School of Police as a newly appointed police officer. He’s eager to break the news to his uncle, a cashier at a bank. While he is waiting at the bank, some robbers enter the premises and grab all the money available at the tellers. The rookie agent finds himself in the middle of an important crime scene and requests the authorisation from his superiors to take charge of the investigation. However they refuse. Fernando has still much to learn. Instead they entrust him another case, a robbery at a car washing garage. During his investigation, Fernando meets Oscar, a cold calculating person with no scruples who pretends to be a rich businessman but is actually the leader of the bank robbers. Thus Fernando manages to infiltrate the gang.

Begoña and I had the chance to see last night on TV2 this very interesting film that together with Apartado de Correos 1001 (1950) directed by Julio Salvador, marked the beginning of Spanish detective films, occasionally named Spanish Film Noir. However, I don’t believe it can be considered as film noir, in its true sense, but is not far from the Italian Neo-Realism. It should be highlighted that, although due to budgetary restraints, it was one of the first times that the cameras, in a fiction film, were taken out to the street in Spain. An essential film to understanding the history and evolution of Spanish cinema.

Read a review (in Spanish) at Blog de Cine.

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