Spain, Denmark, France


The identity of Petra’s father has been hidden from her all her life. When her mother dies, Petra embarks on a quest which leads to Jaume, a celebrated artist and a powerful, ruthless man. As she searches for the truth, Petra meets Marisa, Jaume’s wife, and their son Lucas. Gradually the stories of these characters intertwine in a spiral of malice, family secrets and violence, which will drive them all to the edge. But fate’s cruel logic is derailed by a twist that opens a path to hope and redemption.

Director's Statement

There is more than one theme to PETRAa. Each viewer will define the themes forthemselves. But identity is important. As are fate and the conflict between good and evil. A tragic vein runs through the entire plot. If I had to summarise the subject of PETRA, I would say it is a film about search and redemption. PETRA is a film that grew out of the need to reach out to larger audiences than in my previous films. My first two films, THE HOURS OF THE DAY and SOLITARY FRAGMENTS, were released in theatres in the first decade of the new millennium. It was a time of great enthusiasm and even euphoria, just before the great crisis of the second decade. My film THE DREAM AND THE SILENCE (2012) was a bit of a swan song. At least, it was for me. With it - my fourth film - I ended a period as a filmmaker. BEAUTIFUL YOUTH was rather like starting over. PETRA has been a further step along that new road.
Before I began to design the film, I had to go back to school. The best film school consists of films and books about cinema. Once again, I read the books and saw the films that marked my years of training. I went back to the classics and modern classics.
Film viewers want to have a good time. They want to be thrilled and moved. They want to be surprised. Surprise is the sap that feeds dramatic interest. The whole process consisted of creating a work that brought together attractive attributes. With Michel Gaztambide and Clara Roquet, co-writers of the screenplay, we went back to the classics. Aristotle was our beacon: “Everything must be surprising and necessary”. Everything has been conceived to invite viewers to really get inside the film and travel with it. The journey is an inner one. Toward the interior of the characters and the viewers.
More than any of my previous films, PETRA has been the result of a very participatory collective process. A central role was played by Bárbara Díez, the producer of the film and my partner in Fresdeval Films. She and I initiated the project and were joined quite generously by José María Morales, Antonio Chavarrías, Jérôme Dopffer and Katrin Pors.
Their contributions enhanced the quality of the film. Thanks to them, we worked with an exceptional crew of Spaniards, French and Danes. It was wonderful to work with Hélène Louvart as DOP and with Kristian Eidnes Andersen for music composition. The cast, headed by Bárbara Lennie and Alex Brendemühl, understood perfectly the contained acting style I wanted. Combining internationally renowned actors like Marisa Paredes with natural actors like Joan Botey was one of the greatest challenges of the film.

Director's Biography

Jaime Rosales, director and screenwriter
Born in Barcelona in 1970.
After receiving a degree in Business Economics from ESADE, his devotion to film was fostered when he won a scholarship in 1996 to study film at the prestigious International Film and Television School in San Antonio de los Baños (EICTV) in Havana and then at the Australian Film Television and Radio School (AFTRS) in Sydney. Since 2000 he has developed all his projects as a director with his production company Fresdeval Films.

2018 - PETRA

Cast & Crew

Directed by: Jaime Rosales

Written by: Jaime Rosales, Michel Gaztambide, Clara Roquet

Produced by: Barbara Diez, José Mª Morales, Antonio Chavarrías, Jérôme Dopffer, Katrin Pors

Cinematography: Hélène Louvart

Editing: Lucía Casal

Production Design: Victoria Paz Alvarez

Costume Design: Iratxe Sanz

Make-Up & Hair: Chicha Blanco

Original Score: Kristian Selin Eidnes Andersen

Sound Design: Carlos E. García

Visual Effects: Raúl Romanillos

Cast: Bárbara Lennie (Petra), Alex Brendemühl (Lucas)

Nominations and Awards

  • European Actress 2018
  • Feature Film Selection 2018