Monday, March 12, 2012

The Skin I live In. 2011

A twisty and twisted film from Pedro Almodovar that reunites him with his favorite male actor from his early career the still handsome and sexy Antonio Banderas who plays a wealthy demented plastic surgeon who is doing some very nasty research studies and experiments involving new techniques in skin transplants & synthetic skin that will make your own skin crawl and your  hair stand on end. Banderas has suffered a string of tragedies in his life which pushes him over the edge, way over the edge and these tragic circumstances is what fuels this very entertaining film. It’s not easy to review this film without giving it away, but I will say that there is much in it that you won’t see coming and if you do, you’ll want to duck. Odd characters are introduced it seems every 8 minutes, and the plot twists are also fast and loose. The Almodovar touch and his humanity is there throughout the film along with his recurring  themes of family, the love of parents for their children, off the wall sexual encounters, gender and the cards that life deals us even if we don’t want to play. The film is also rich and overflowing with his careful use of color, décor and fashion (which by the way plays an important part in the film) that helps propel this wild film along its curvy and dangerous road. Almodovar has always been a referential director and this film is no exception  with influences as wide and varied as Frankenstein, Vertigo, Cronenberg, Oscar Wilde and Charles Ludlam. Also in the cast is another one of his regulars,  the marvelous  Marisa Paredes who plays his loving and dedicated housekeeper and has enough of her own secrets to fuel another film. Not one of his great films, for that you have to see “Talk To Her” or “All About My Mother” but it’s still first rate Almodovar. One of the ten best films  of 2011.  


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