This hidden gem of Spanish horror should be your plan for Halloween (it’s free)

Still from ‘O Apóstolo’, recommendation for Halloween (Photo: Artifact productions)

Arrives Halloween and one of the star plans for these dates is to sit in front of the television to enjoy horror movies or series. It is normal that among the numerous offer that plagues platforms today, it is difficult to decide on a specific title, especially since classics seen on infinite occasions always pass through our minds that we do not feel like repeating. For this reason, today I bring a recommendation of a Spanish film unknown among the general public that until now had been very difficult to access, a stop-motion animation production based on local legends that has nothing to envy titles like Corpse Bride, Nightmare Before Christmas or other style tapes.

Is about O Apostolo (The Apostle), a film directed by Fernando Cortizo in 2012 that takes us to an atmosphere of mystery and horror in a remote village in Galicia. It was largely financed by crownfunding and back in the day it was practically impossible to enjoy it in theaters because, due to problems with its distribution, it barely reached a few theaters in Spain. The result was a complete disaster at the box office, since at a cost of more than 5 million euros it only grossed €62,162.88, according to data from the Ministry of Culture and Sport.

The difficulties intensified in its exit to the domestic market. Faced with the impossibility of paying the debts of its realization due to its limited commercial career, this It was never released in stores on DVD or Blu-Ray.. It could only be purchased through its website, which did not make it very accessible to the public. Not even the explosion of streaming made any platform interested in adding it to its catalogue, which has meant that in all this time O Apostle It was practically impossible to see. But luckily now can be viewed for free on YouTube. And you shouldn’t miss it.

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His proposal presents us with the story of a prisoner who, recently escaped from prison, travels to a remote village in Galicia to recover stolen loot that he hid there. However, he will begin to notice strange events that occur in the place, such as mysterious disappearances, the sinister behavior of the elderly or supernatural events. Namely, a story that mixes terror, mystery and a disturbing atmosphere that delights all lovers of the genre. In addition, it also has touches of humor that bring it closer to stop-motion productions known to all as Tim Burton’s, but with a strong Spanish touch that makes the film feel very much ours.

To this must be added a cast of luxury voices with legends of our cinema such as Luis Tosar, Geraldine Chaplin, Jorge Sanz or Paul Naschy, who in addition to dubbing their characters have animated versions made in their image and likeness, which is an artistic delight. In addition, since the film was conceived in 2008 and its dubbing was done before starting its animation, it was the last work of Paul Naschy, the legendary Spanish fanterror actor, before his death in 2009, thus giving the film a even more special aura.

Despite its failure at the box office and having been hidden from the public for so long, El Apóstol did have the good fortune to be recognized at awards. His achievements include more than a dozen awards at international festivals, such as the Audience Award at the prestigious Annecy animation festival in 2014 or Best Film at various competitions focused on fantastic productions. The Goya did not manage to obtain it, since that year it was competing with The Adventures of Tadeo Jones and the Spanish academics preferred to reward the success of the Telecinco film, however, was shortlisted for the Oscar for Best Animated Feature Film in 2014 and competed with ribbons of the stature of Monsters University, Gru 2 either The Croods. The nomination was finally not possible, but that a small film with no resources got so far in the awards race already says a lot about its quality.

I was one of the few who managed to see it at its premiere, and the truth is that I was very sorry that a production of these characteristics suffered such a bad commercial destiny. Of course, selling an adult animated film shot in stop-motion is not an easy task, but at least it deserved to have had a decent distribution that, at the very least, would have made its existence known to the public. As I say, its story set in Galician horror legends is a delight, offering a story of horror and mystery full of intrigue and national flavor that no one should miss. And the same with its elaborate artistic section, since its scenes and dolls made by hand and full of details are overwhelming.

If you want to enjoy it this Halloween, you have it with a simple click on Youtube, where it has been uploaded with the intention of making it known, motivating the public to make donations and continue to alleviate the debts left by its completion in 2012, which they blame on being scammed by the distributors they trusted for its release to the market. . In addition, if you want to obtain it in physical format, the option of buying it on DVD through its Web page.

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This hidden gem of Spanish horror should be your plan for Halloween (it’s free)