Lots of Kids, a Monkey and a Castle

Tuesday, April 10, 2018
9:00 p.m.
Victoria Theatre

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Wednesday, April 11, 2018
6:00 p.m.
Creativity Theater

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Tuesday, April 17, 2018
4:00 p.m.
Victoria Theatre

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Guests Expected

Director Gustavo Salmerón expected to attend April 10 and April 11 screenings.


Julita had three dreams in life – to have lots of kids, a monkey, and a castle – and as she conveys over the course of this funny and touching documentary, managed to obtain all three. Presently faced with financial hardship, she is being forced out of the ramshackle castle, along with the countless objects, both priceless treasures and worthless detritus, inside. A hoarder’s dream, this charming film captures a family reliving its past through objects, memories, and shared histories and was filmed over 14 years by son and debut feature filmmaker Gustavo Salmerón.

"Lots of Kids, a Monkey and a Castle, though it depicts the family falling on hard times and Julita tut-tutting about her 'suffering,' is primarily a film that overflows with affection, warmth, and humor, about a highly dysfunctional but deeply loving clan. In Anna Karenina, Tolstoy famously declared that 'all happy families resemble one another; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.' But Salmerón’s film, crammed as full of tchotchkes and knick-knacks and bibelots as one of his mother’s closets, refutes that, presenting an endearingly haphazard portrait of an extraordinary woman and the family she made — one that has discovered its own, completely unique way to be happy.” – Jessica Kiang, Variety

“Julita Salmerón insists more than once in Lots of Kids, a Monkey and a Castle that nobody outside of her friends and family will have any interest in watching her story. Julita has a point, since family movies often hold little value for viewers who don’t share the genes or immediate concerns of their subjects or creators, but she couldn’t be farther from the truth when it comes to this film. Director Gustavo Salmerón has found a great character in his larger-than-life mother. Julita’s quirks resonate throughout the extensive range of family videos cut together for this film. No matter how strange, wacky, bizarre, or embarrassing Julita may seem, her kids love her even more, thanks to her eccentricities." – Patrick Mullen, Point of View Magazine

Filmmaker Bio(s)

Director Gustavo Salmerón

A longtime actor who made his screen debut in 1993 in The Red Squirrel, Gustavo Salmerón first turned to filmmaking in 2001 with Salad Days, for which he won the Goya for Best Short Film – Fiction. Lots of Kids, a Monkey and a Castle was culled from over 400 hours of footage. “In the 1980s, I started filming my mother and I realized that she had tremendous potential,” says Salmerón of how footage that could have been a home movie evolved into an award-winning documentary that counts a Goya for Best Documentary among its honors. “Something that I had been trying to achieve for many years as an actor – being totally present and authentic, and my mother did this automatically.” (Cineuropa)

Film Details
  • Country(ies): Spain
  • Language(s): Spanish
  • Year: 2017
  • Running time: 91
  • Director(s): Gustavo Salmerón
  • Producer(s): Gustavo Salmerón
  • Cinematographer(s): Gustavo Salmerón
  • Editor(s): Raúl De Torres, Dani Urdiales
  • Music: Mastretta

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