“The Devil’s Backbone” by Jonathan Daniels is a thriller set on the Spanish Civil War. It was about ghosts in a Spanish boy’s school, or rather, an orphanage run by the widow of an activist fighting for freedom. A young boy enters the school, unaware that he was orphaned, and he was the one who the ghost came to. An older youth took a dislike of him and the ghost terrifyingly cried out for help. And it is him the ghost keeps asking for help.
A former student, who was then the school’s handyman hated the place with a passion. The cook turns out to be his fiancée and they are planning to escape from there and buy a farm, but for the meantime, he greedily watches over gold ingots hidden away for the Republican army.The young boy, Carlos, eventually uncovers the secret that haunts the school and the connection between the disappearance of a young student the night the bomb fell into the courtyard and the avarice and brutality that have crept into the school from an outside world enflamed by war.
It is a story not merely based on ghosts but also a movie that empathizes with orphans. It tackles the traumatic experiences during the time of Spanish war but through the eyes of a child, giving a lighter perception. It also talks about, between the lines, about the mercenary and evil that was also going on at the time, as well as the non-fictional realities.
Human frailties and emotional stuff.