Directed by Julio Medem, starring Paz Vega, Tristan Ulloa, Najwa Nimri, Elena Anaya, Daniel Freyre and Silvia Llanos.

From the director of 'Lovers of the Arctic Circle' comes an intricately-woven tale of love, chance and well, sex. The narrative is juxtaposed between past and present and concerns a quartet of outsiders whose lives overlap in a profound way. The film opens with Lucía (Paz Vega) fleeing Madrid to escape what she believes is the loss of her writer boyfriend, Lorenzo (Tristán Ulloa). She makes for an island Lorenzo often spoke of to reassess her life. Bathed in sunlight and lost in an eclectic landscape she meets Elena (Najwa Nimri) and Carlos (Daniel Freyre) who are also running from the past.

The story of Lorenzo (Tristán Ulloa) begins some years earlier on the same island where he celebrates his birthday with anonymous, passionate sex with a stranger. Unknown to him, this union produces a daughter, Luna (Silvia Llanos), which he only finds out about 5 years later in the midst of his torrid relationship with Lucía. Their liaison deteriorates when Lorenzo discovers that Luna lives with her mother close by and strikes up a friendship her babysitter Belen (Elena Anaya). Tortured by his absent fatherhood, he struggles to keep his secret from Lucía, while his flirtation with Belen deepens. The story takes a tragic turn which impacts on everyone involved and results in the regrouping of the main characters on the island to seek answers and regeneration.

It is a cyclical tale that swirls around the emotional resonance of human relationships, capturing the essence of physical love and attraction perfectly. Beautifully shot, if a little slowly paced, we are drawn in to a seemingly dark tale that reveals itself to be full of light. The cast are excellent, and the script and direction are vividly engaging. Rich in symbolism (including plenty of Freudian images), it does not impact the same way as 'Lovers of the Arctic Circle'. Medem should still be proud of a film that examines the shadows of the past where fact and fiction overlap with an emotional complexity.

Sineád Gleeson