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Emilio Martinez-Lazaro's historical drama Las 13 Rosas (AKA 13 Roses) commences in 1939 Madrid.
As the forces of nationalist general Francisco Franco sweep down into the city and bombs cascade onto Spanish buildings, two Republicans - Red Cross employee Virtudes (Marta Etura) and streetcar attendant Julia (Veronica Sanchez) - sit in a club watching a live set by two musicians: the Communist Canepa (Enrico Lo Verso), and Enrique (Asier Etxeandia), the husband of Blanca (Pilar Lopez de Ayala).
Sensing obvious trouble given the country's circumstances, Canepa opts to flee for his life - receiving some fiscal support from Blanca - and a romance blossoms between Julia and Perico (Felix Gomez), a soldier from Franco's forces. Meanwhile, unrest and extreme distrust run rampant among the nationalists.
Hungry for scapegoats - despite the lack of conclusive evidence - the troops respond to a rumor about a plot to rub out Franco by rounding up the 13 innocent young women of the title, including Julia, the socialist Adelina (Gabriella Pession) and 11 others - who are collectively imprisoned, given trial and slated for execution for treasonous activity.