El día de San Valentín was originally a Christian festival, a day to honour Saint Valentine. He lived in ancient Rome and did good work out of love and charity. His name day was celebrated for the first time on 14 February in the year 494. Nowadays, Valentine’s Day is celebrated on 14 February in almost all of Spain and many Spanish-speaking countries in Latin-America as el día del amor y la amistad (the day of love and friendship). Loved ones give each other roses, postcards, serenades and dine together on good food. In Catalonia, they celebrate the day of loved ones, el día de San Jordí (patron saint of Catalonia) on 23 April. Men give their novia (loved one) a rose and receive a book. What did you do for your loved one(s) on 14 February this year?
The film called Dolor y Gloria has been a huge success, both in Spain and internationally. It even received two Oscar nominations, for the best foreign film and for the best lead actor (Antonio Banderas), although it was ultimately left empty-handed. Another beautiful Spanish-language film went into première late last year: El Amor Menos Pensado by the Argentinian director Juan Vera. A married couple are thrown into an existential crisis when their son leaves home, giving them new-found freedom after 25 years of marriage. It is a film about romance, longing, loyalty, falling in love and what brings the most happiness.