Welcome Mr. Marshall! [Bienvenido Mister Marshall!] (1953) dir. Luis Garcia Berlanga
Villa del Rio is a small, peaceful village, where the folkloric singer, Carmen Vargas, and her manager arrive to give a performance. On the same day, a government delegation announces that a Marshall Plan commission, offering financial aid to develop the country, is to pass through the village. In order to give a surprise to its American visitors, the village mobilises itself to organise a grand reception in the purest Andalusian style.
Under the guise of a comedy of manners, this great box office success is really a work of social criticism. Its main song and many of its phases have gained mythical status in Spanish cinema. The film highlights the stereotypes held by both the Spanish and the Americans regarding the culture of the other, as well as displays of social criticism of 1950s Francoist Spain (showing a typical Spanish village, with typical inhabitants: a priest, the majority of the population that are peasants, the mayor, and a hidalgo).