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Second Skin [Import]
Excellent acting elevates Second Skin to earnest heights of heartfelt melodrama in contemporary Madrid. It's a Spanish soap opera in the most intelligent sense, inviting comparison to the intimate passion plays of Pedro Almódovar and Eric Rohmer. Director Gerardo Vera's approach is more conventional, despite the fact that this modest tale of marital discord involves an unhappy wife, Elena (Ariadna Gil), whose suspicions are only slightly mistaken. Instead of another woman, her husband Alberto (Jordi Mollà) is having an affair with Diego (Javier Bardem, from Before Night Falls). He's tormented by his genuine love for his wife, child, and gay lover, and his inability to choose between them. Unfortunately, the screenplay decides for him, resorting to a last-minute twist of fate to resolve the dilemma that Alberto couldn't solve on his own. It's a cop-out solution, more suited to bad cable TV, weakening an otherwise honest and emotionally involving film. Recommended, with minor reservations. --Jeff Shannon
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Top Customer Reviews
Javier Bardem is inimitable as a sensitively wrought gay surgeon in love with a bisexual man (again, in a brilliant performance by Jordi Molla) who is married to a wise if fragile woman (sensitively acted by Ariadna Gil). Bardem's best friend is a fellow surgeon (the wondrous Cecilia Roth) who helps him through the highs and lows of his love affair with a man who is conflicted to the extreme. To tell more of the story would be to deprive the viewer of the impact. Suffice it to say that with the consistently excellent performances by this stunning quartet under the ever sensitive eye of Vera, this is a film to see again and again. Why is it that American actors have so much difficulty playing gay men? These two Spanish actors, coming from a society that is machismo, still make their lovers wholly believable and sensusal.
ok, by now you guys already know what the film is all about so i won't get into it. let's just go ahead and talk about it.
the acting? good. the actors? gorgeous. jordi molla's shifting blue eyes, nervous smile, and impulsive hair stroking, infuses his character with scrim behavior. he is a most arresting presence. bardem lends his diego an almost cheerleader like optimism.
it's a stylish film. swelling soundtrack and exotic cuban, lucrecia, singing a sultry version of "youkali." diego's environs are of ocean breezes and vibrant home colors while problematic alberto's is all dark, blue, and gloomy. he even sports stuble 24/7 and glassy eyes to drive home his inner struggles. truly stylish.
but the ending was a betrayal, a cheap irony considering the clincher of the movie which was a line that basically outlined alberto's non-confrontational method of dealing with his issues; diego says to alberto, "once again, we do the dirty work for you." well, the ending does the dirty work for alberto effectively. what a copout solution indeed! confused alberto gets off scott free and left everybody else to suffer! this is where the movie's soul is lost. this is where it sinks into melodrama.
Most recent customer reviews
this is a difficult topic -most directors will not like to deal with the "gay" topic especially when it is so physical in nature on screen. Read morePublished on Aug. 23 2003 by Libri Mundi
I really had looked forward to this movie. Having seen Javier Burdem in "Before Night Falls" I was thrilled that he was appearing in another (supposedly) intense "gay-themed" film. Read morePublished on April 23 2003 by Amazon Customer
First of all, if you made it here, congratulations! This movie is hard to find. Released in Spain as "Segunda Piel" and in the UK/US as "Second Skin," amazon. Read morePublished on March 13 2003 by Andy Orrock
I could not stop watching this movie. The acting was superb. Javier Bardem, Jordi Molla, and Ariandna Gil did awesome jobs of acting. Read morePublished on March 13 2003 by Kimberly A. Allen
It's a shame that Far From Heaven got the press and nods because Second Skin is a far more realistic portrayal of life for a gay married man. Read morePublished on March 10 2003
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