A sensual portrait of an urban community that explores human desires, ambitions and fragility through the daily activities of a swimming club. In a spectacular setting overlooking the beach, port and city of Barcelona, suntanned grannies, world-class athletes and the body-beautiful converge in their search for happiness and wellbeing.
As days unfold and seasons pass, we follow the ups and downs of life’s journey - the freshness of childhood, the trials of adolescence, the love and ambition of young adulthood, the crises of middle age, the loneliness and liberation of old-age. We learn how an entity founded on working class ideals evolved over a century into a diverse and tolerant community that is a home-away-from-home for its members.
The film is a choral piece with three main characters whose intertwining narratives play out over the course of a year. Maria Borrella (12) has her sights firmly set on becoming an olympic swimmer and her first step is to break the Spanish record in freestyle. As she trains for her goal, she confronts the conflicts between sport and what her coach describes as a distracting cocktail of ‘homework, discoteques and boys’. Sonia Montes (33) is also aiming for gold. Previously a dancer, she recounts meeting her husband Oscar here at the gym and following him into bodybuilding. As Sonia trains for her place at the world Bodyfitness finals the punishing training regime begins to take its toll – hormonally and psychologically. Joan Sagarra (80) recounts the desolation he felt at retirement and we witness him finding a new lease of life at the club. Joan is at the centre of a group of elderly men and women whose daily banter provides a reflection on the developing narrative. A range of supporting characters step out from the chorus to strengthen the central stories.
THE CLUB envelops the viewer in the sensual world of the human body, in all its forms. We eavesdrop on conversations, and our characters poignant testimony leads us through our journey on the wheel of life.