I’m becoming an expert at reading subtitles flying quickly by in yellow. Since I have a sparse Spanish vocabulary, I can pick up the usual things we all know – yes – hello – goodbye – thank you – and I can count to six! (Pathetic, I know.) Nevertheless, another well-done foreign period drama has caught my attention on Netflix entitled, El Tiempo Entre Costuras – “The Time In Between” or literally the time between seams. Huh? Seams? Well, let me clarify that the heroine of this story is a talented seamstress in Madrid.
The story starts in her childhood with a girl named Sira Quiroga played by Adriana Ugarte. Her mother is a seamstress in a shop, and she learns the trade as she grows up. In the early episodes, she meets a young man who is a government clerk. He is kind and attentive, and she agrees to marry him though early on you see she has her doubts about whether she loves him. Then by chance, he takes her to a shop to look for a typewriter to purchase so she can learn another trade. When she meets the salesman, Ramiro Arribas played by Ruben Cortada. (He is so handsome it makes your knees weak with his dark and alluring eyes – just Google the guy). Naturally, she loses her senses and falls madly in love.
After breaking her engagement, she runs away with him to Tangiers, despite her mother’s objections. He lures into a business venture after Sira comes into quite a bit of money from her father (another storyline there) and convinces her to let him manage her wealth. Well, let’s just say the man may be handsome, but he doesn’t have an ounce of moral character. He never marries her, and as the story sadly reveals, Sira finds herself abandoned and in dire circumstances.
During this time period, the civil war in Spain is waging. Her mother is trapped in Madrid. On the other side of the coin, she is in trouble with the law, deeply in debt, and to make money, sets up her own dress shop. Her newfound business leads her into the lives of many other characters during 1939 and the verge of World War II. In the end, Sira the seamstress becomes Sira the spy, leading her into danger and the arms of another man back in Madrid.
The story is an excellent production in quality and acting. Absolutely no complaints about this good period drama. It tells an intriguing tale about Spain and Morocco during the years 1934-1940’s.
The dresses that Sira makes for her customers, as well as the ones she wears, are absolutely stunning. If you love the padded shoulders and sleek styles of this time period, the clothes alone, as well as the men, make this an absolute watch. Here is a link to a good article as to why the fashions alone make this period drama worthwhile. 7 Reasons Why Every Period Period Costume Enthusiast Should Watch
Frankly, I have avoided a lot of foreign films because watching them takes patience to glue your eyes to the translations. Luckily, in this production, there are English characters who do speak in English, while the subtitles translate to Spanish. Since watching Seyit and Sura from Turkey and this gem from Spain, I have come to the conclusion that I am missing out on many excellent period dramas from different countries. My viewing choices are definitely widening.