Notes from a small island
A weblog by Jonathan Ali

Wednesday, February 18, 2004  

The action of Talk to Her could be horrific, or at the very least nauseating. Yet such is the imaginative warmth that Almodovar conveys for his two male leads, combined with his stylisation and modification of the real world in which the rape happens, revulsion is neutralised through a combination of sympathy and alienation. Almodovar so expertly manages his movie's perspectives that the rape looks like a subsidiary event in an essentially heartwarming, tragicomic fable of "relationships". It leaves unanswered the question of how exactly we are supposed to think and feel about this rape, or if it is a rape at all….

The central question is: does Almodovar's Bunuelian surreality, however restrained here, heighten and poeticise the sexual issues? Or is it just a sneaky way of raising the stakes and lowering them again? I think it's the former, simply because of the innocent, almost childlike compassion that suffuses this movie. Maybe more than any other director, Almodovar creates his own world, entire of itself, with its own ecosystem of pleasure and pathos.

-- From another Peter Bradshaw review for yet another Spanish film--the fascinating, wonderful, Talk to Her, by Pedro Almodovar. For insomniacs with cable, it's on Cinemax on Thursday morning at 2am (local time).

posted by Jonathan | 11:34 AM 0 comments


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