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El Año de las luces In 1940, 16 year-old Manolo is taken by his older brother to a tuberculosis sanatorium located on the border of Spain and Portugal. As the oldest boy in the sanitorium, he begins to experience the stirrings of sexual desire. His first overture to one of the nurses meets with rejection, but he really asks for trouble when he falls for another pretty nurse and she herself becomes attracted to him.
El sol del membrillo During the autumn months of 1990, López the artist attempts to paint a ripening quince tree in the garden of his house in Madrid. The play of light on the leaves and the splendour of the golden fruit proves increasingly elusive to capture as the nights draw in and the fruit begins to drop. Life goes on around the painting and López is visited by friends and fellow artists who provide lighthearted interludes.
Carne trémula The lives of five people are intertwined by romance, friendship and rivalry. Victor has fallen for a woman, Elena. Elena wants nothing to do with Victor and she calls the cops when he shows up at her apartment. The two cops that show up are David and Sancho. Sancho is a chronic, abusive drunk and believes his wife, Clara may be having an affair with his partner, David.
Las cosas del querer Set in 1940s Madrid, the film follows the fortunes of three vaudeville performers: handsome Juan, who plays piano for his passionate girlfriend Pepita, and her onstage partner, flamboyant Mario. Like Pepita, Mario is in love with straight man Juan; rebuffed, he happily moves his attention to a string of lovers. After an affair with a young nobleman, whom Mario spurns, the nobleman's mother concocts a nasty revenge.