The Olive Tree

The Olive Tree

Iciar Bollain (2016)

15 Certificate


Our Score
Paul Laverty, Ken Loach's regular screenwriter, continues his profitable partnership with Spanish director Iciar Bollain with this charming, if not always subtle parable about the threat that globalisation and recession pose to tradition and family life. Desperate to cheer up her careworn grandfather, 20-something Alma (Anna Castillo) dupes her uncle (Javier Gutiérrez) and devoted trucker Rafa (Pep Ambròs) into driving a flatbed across the continent to retrieve the ancient olive tree sold to a multinational based in Dusseldorf. As in most road movies, the incidents along the way are instructive and contrived, with the acquisition of a replica Statue of Liberty being the most blatant. But Castillo is suitably spirited in keeping the truth from her travelling companions, while cinematographer Sergi Gallardo makes evocative use of the golden Spanish sun, the invigorating open roads and the soul-destroying cityscapes. Yet, while this heartfelt dramedy is never less than engaging, Bollain and Laverty's conviction that idealistic youth can haul society back from the abyss sadly feels a touch naive.


A young woman embarks on a mission to recover her grandfather's beloved old olive tree, which was sold against his will. Comedy drama, starring Anna Castillo, Javier Gutierrez and Pep Ambros.

Cast & Crew

Alma Anna Castillo
Alcachofa, "Artichoke", "Arti" Javier Gutiérrez
Rafa Pep Ambròs
Ramón Manuel Cucala
Luis Miguel Angel Aladren
Vanessa Carme Pla
Sole Ana Isabel Mena
Wiki Maria Romero
Adelle Paula Usero
Sophie Janina Agnes Schröder
Director Iciar Bollain
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Other Information

Language: Spanish, German, English, French +subtitlesColourTheatrical distributor: Eureka EntertainmentGuidance: SwearingAvailable on: DVD and Blu-rayReleased on: 17 Mar 2017