It’s often assumed that there’s few things Leatherface cares about, his chainsaw, his family, and the zesty taste of real human meat flavored chili. Well, that’s not true. I hate it when someone wanders around in a bloody smock and a mask made of human flesh and everyone assumes that murder and rampage are the only things on his mind. Monsters are very interesting people (just ask Bugs Bunny he knows), and they are not always as one dimensional as you’d think. Just take a look at today’s feature.
A Real Friend (Adivina quien soy) starring Goya Toledo, Nerea Inchausti, and Eduard Farelo. Directed by Enrique Urbizu.
A Real Friend is part of the 6 Films to Keep You Awake series which was the Spanish equivalent to our Masters of Horror series. I haven’t had time to check out the other films included, but when I heard about this one, I went right for it. It’s the story of Estrella a young girl who lives alone with her mother. Well, I suppose not totally alone as Estrella has an imaginary friend. What sets hers apart is that it’s Leatherface. (It’s never expressly said to be the Chain sawing Wunderkind and in the credits he’s listed as Hombre Gordo, but there’s very little mistaking that tiny tie and, well, that leather face.) Estrella is bookish and shy, and she has few friends. So when she meets a man on the street who looks like a cross between Anton Levey and Max Schreckshe becomes friends with this “vampire”, but is the vampire real of just another one of the little lady’s imaginary friends.
I would love to tell you more, but the run time on the film is so short, as it was made for TV, to give much more away would be to tell all the juicy bits. I will have to say that it could have been a tad shorter and the story was so fascinating until the last minute or so undid the magic the tale had woven. Still, the acting and directing were top notch and I loved the faithful recreations of classic characters like Leatherface, Nosferatu, and Lon Chaney’s character from London After Midnight,and the sight of Leatherface in class or comforting Estrella must be seen to be believed.
In the end, I give this one high marks on the concept, but low marks on how they chose to sum it all up. I would still recommend that you pick it up and give it a watch, and there may be others on the set that are good as well. ( Paco Plaza, the director of [REC] soon to be released here remade as Quarantine, has one that looks particularly interesting. ) So pick it and see a whole new side ofLeatherface you never new existed. (I couldn’t find a trailer for A Real Friend so I’ll leave you with another clip that shows yet another side to our friend.)