When the Mountain Rumbles

El día que volaron la montaña

  • Alba Bresolí Aliberch
  • Spain
  • 2022
  • 29 min
  • Dutch Premiere
  • Best of Fests

In 1959, during Franco’s dictatorship, the inhabitants of the Spanish village Escó were ordered to evacuate to make way for the construction of a reservoir in the Pyrenees. One father with three sons simply refused to go. The three now-aging brothers still live in the village, isolated among the ruins where they tend their herd of sheep. Time has stood still here for decades, but now the government intends to build a motorway that will pass right through the area. Their simple, secluded way of life is imperiled again.

The empathetic camera follows the brothers with observational, panoramic shots in this stunning landscape—often in silence, or against an aural backdrop of tinkling sheep bells or bleating. Sometimes one of the men sings a song, daydreams aloud about food, or holds forth about the value of diligence in labor. But time is moving on, and soon there are brutish machines driving noisily and threateningly among the sheep.

The prologue and epilogue of When the Mountain Rumbles were filmed with an 8mm camera. These grainy black-and-white scenes form a monument to a pure way of life and a bygone era.


  • 29 min
  • color / black and white
  • DCP
  • Spoken languages: Spanish
  • Subtitles in: English
Alba Bresolí Aliberch
Chloé Atkinson for Polar Star Films S.L., Carles Brugueras for Polar Star Films S.L., Marieke van den Bersselaar for Polar Star Films S.L.
Executive producer
Marieke van den Bersselaar for Polar Star Films S.L., Carles Brugueras for Polar Star Films S.L.
Ben Guez
Meritxell Colell, Guillermo Cobo, Nila Núñez Urgell

IDFA history

Dutch Premiere
Best of Fests

Share this film

Print this page

IDFA history

This website uses cookies.

By using cookies we can measure how our site is used, how it can be further improved and to personalize the content of online advertisements.

 here everything about our cookie policy. If you choose to decline, we only place functional and analytical cookies