Retorno a la juventud (1954)

aka Return to Youth
Article 3141 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 1-12-2009
Posting Date: 3-21-2010
Directed by Juan Bustillo Oro
Featuring Andres Soler, Enrique Rambal, Rosario Granados
Country: Mexico
What it is: Mexican fantasy/horror on the artier side

A doctor, pining for his lost youth, is replaced by the youthful image of himself in his portrait. However, his new youthfulness leads him into actions that result in murder…

My copy is in unsubtitled Spanish, and I’ve been unable to find an adequate plot description to help me with this one, so there may be some inaccuracy above. Furthermore, it looks as if the movie isn’t really straightforward; there’s a point in the proceedings where the sets (particularly the exteriors) take on a strong non-realistic air to them, and certain events seem incredible, even given the premise. This opens the possibility that much of the movie may be a dream (or nightmare, as the case may be). It’s quite moody, and it reminded me of EL HOMBRE SIN ROSTRO, and I was not surprised to discover both movies had the same director. Still, much of the plot seems to involve the amours of the central characters, and the encounters with jealous husbands, etc. do get a little tiring, a problem that is enhanced by the fact that the language barrier keeps me from really understanding the movie. I’m going to have to say the jury is still out on this one until I can see a dubbed/subtitled version, but parts of it certainly look intriguing.


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