Oriana (1985): Venezuelan Fina Torres’ Debut Wins Camera d’Or at Cannes Film Fest

Fina Torres’ Oriana won the Caméra d’Or Prize at the 1985 Cannes Film Fest as the best first feature.

Set in a hacienda or ranch, the feature, co-written by Torres and Antoine Lacomblez, unfolds as a multi-layered mystery-melodrama about a woman who returns from France to the house of her childhood in Venezuela.  In the process, she discovers some secrets about the real identity and behavior of her aunt (Oriana), who had died and left the property to her.

In flashbacks, the film show the young Maria trying to understand the quiet but strange atmosphere that surrounds the place while sorting out why Oriana had never left the hacienda.

After these reveries within reveries, Maria makes one more crucial discovery,  by connecting some issues, leading her to decide not to sell the house.

Oriana was submitted as the Venezuelan entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 58th Oscars, but was not nominated.

Running time: 88 minutes.