If you can sum up the sentiments of Fernando León de Aranoa's delicate Spanish drama in one phrase, then it is: being on the dole is a bit rubbish. Javier Bardem does balding angst as redundant steelworker Santa, bumming around endless days on the seafront or borrowing beer money to douse his simmering rage. Reduced to substitute babysitting so his friend's daughter can go on a date, he waxes looong and lyrical about the travails of the Costa del Dole.
It plays like Brassed Off on holiday, with Bardem typically intense and involving and de Aranoa expertly capturing the edgy banter of disaffected friends and heartbreaking side effects of globalisation (there's a sad scene where a middle-aged bloke sweats out his hair dye waiting for an interview).
Too much talk dissipates emotion, and the cloying score tries too hard to move, but this is still an affecting depiction of lives robbed of purpose.