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All About My Mother (Widescreen)
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After her son is killed in an accident, Manuela (Cecilia Roth) leaves Madrid for her old haunts in Barcelona. She reconnects with an old friend, a pre-op transsexual prostitute named La Agrado (Antonia San Juan), who introduces her to Rosa (Penélope Cruz), a young nun who turns out to be pregnant. Meanwhile, Manuela becomes a personal assistant for Huma Rojo (Marisa Paredes), an actress currently playing Blanche DuBois in a production of A Streetcar Named Desire. All About My Mother traces the delicate web of friendship and loss that binds these women together. The movie is dedicated to the actresses of the world, so it's not surprising that all the performances are superb. Roth in particular anchors All About My Mother with compassion and generosity. But fans of writer-director Pedro Almodóvar needn't fret--as always, Almodóvar's work undermines conventional notions of sexual identity and embraces all human possibilities with bright colors and melodramatic plotting. However, All About My Mother approaches its twists and turns with a broader emotional scope than most of Almodóvar's work; even the more extravagant aspects of the story are presented quietly, to allow the sadness of life to be as present as the irrepressible vitality of the characters. Almodóvar embraces pettiness, jealousy, and grief as much as kindness, courage, and outrageousness, and the movie is the richer for it. --Bret Fetzer
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Top Customer Reviews
Almodovar does it every time without fail.
He creates stories using characters that would be unsympathetically portrayed by other directors, yet he creates empathy within you even for the most screwed up them.
In this story, dealing with the love a mother has for her son, and her tragic loss when he dies, you meet prostitutes, transsexuals, transvestites and nuns with HIV!
Sounds ridiculous, but the director is a genius.
It's worth noting that this film won an Oscar for Best International Movie.
A truly moving, emotional, funny and thought provoking story, with colourful characters and told with genuine warmth.
I defy anyone not to be moved...
Like other Almodovar films, the complex story line shows the strains that pull apart and bring together relationships. The emotional lives of the characters are laid bare. While there may be melodrama, there is a strict avoidance of sentimentality. The acting is wonderful, especially Cecilia Roth, who for some reason reminds me of the British actress, Hannah Gordon.
My only criticism is the use of coincidence. This is also a feature of other Almodovar's films; but here he stretches it a bit far. For instance, first the Cecilia Roth character steps in to take the part of an actress in a professional stage play, to great acclaim, and then when she leaves it, her transvestite friend, who as far as I know has never acted in his life, effortlessly takes over. This is a small criticism. "All About My Mother" is a splendid film by a great film maker. Without being a dreary feminist polemic, it is a celebration of women in all their roles: as mothers, as lovers, as carers; and to those who want to be women. Warmly recommended.
Greatly aggrieved, she decides to fulfill his wish post-humously. She takes the train from Madrid to Barcelona -- from where she ran away when pregnant and had never returned. It turns out that she used to appear in a theater group's rendition of "A Streetcar Named Desire". She finds the theater that features the same play (in fact, she and her son had seen the same traveling theater group in Madrid the night he died.) She takes a job there and makes friends with the two lesbian stars of the play. She also reconnects with her friends from her past life, althogh not all --- Lola is conspicuously missing, and everyone wonders where she is.
Catch Penelope Cruz well-cast in a spectacularly understated role as Sister Rosa, a pregnant nun. She is excellent!
Dr Jacques COULARDEAU
Most recent customer reviews
Peter Almodovar is one of my favorite film director, All about my mother is - in my opinion - one of his top movies. Read morePublished on June 5 2013 by Eva Mickova
My favorite Almodovar film to this date. He finally combines the best of his older, absurdist films, with his new found maturity and real emotion that began to emerge in 'Flower of... Read morePublished on April 6 2011 by K. Gordon
My favorite Almodovar film to this date. He finally combines the best of his older, absurdist films, with his new found
maturity and real emotion that began to emerge in... Read more
The actresses are good. The subject/hidden feeling as explored are also good. However can't the director work out a better, compelling plot line, a reasonable/believable touching... Read morePublished on May 24 2004
Manuela has just lost her son in a traffic accident and travels to Barcelone to look up old friends, including the transvestite who abandoned her 18 years ago never knowing she was... Read morePublished on Dec 16 2003 by audrey frances
"All About My Mother" eschews the trite little star-studded pap that passes for drama in Hollywood these days, and carries with it a tremendous pedigree: masterful acting... Read morePublished on Sept. 14 2003 by Greekfreak
The problem with too many "dramas" is that they constantly fall into straightjackets like "tearjerker" or "realist", loaded with terrible amounts of... Read morePublished on Aug. 14 2003 by fat_runner
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