There's something there in Erice's work, but it never really grips me completely. El Sur is often praised for its cinematography and while I can appreciate some of the shots and the delicate framing, the colors are often dreary and it's just not what I'd consider to be an overwhelming visual experience.
Estrella is a young girl who lives in a northern town in Spain. She is entranced by her father, an enigmatic but mysterious man who came all the way from the south. As she learns more about her father, she finds that he was never able to fully cut the ties with his heimat and that he left behind his biggest love when he moved to the north.
El Sur definitely has its moments, it's not a stuffy drama and the mix of romance and mystery elements creates a unique atmosphere. I was somewhat bothered by the slow pacing and Estrella's somewhat uninteresting quest. I zoned out a couple of times, but there was just enough there to keep pulling me back.