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Paparelli's Movie Reviews
Well, it's just, like... my opinion, man


Saturday, September 02, 2006

year: 2006
directed by: Pedro Almodóvar
written by: Pedro Almodóvar
notable cast: Penélope Cruz, Carmen Maura, Lola Dueñas, Blanca Portillo, Yohana Cobo
Paparelli's rating: (0 = worst, **** = best)

Volver certainly is a special movie. It's full of elements that would make it a cult movie, but it also has a kind of fabricated feel about it. I got the impression someone was desperately trying to convince me I was watching a future cult movie classic.

There are many nice moments in the movie. Interesting characters, nice photography (!), and the Spanish language is also of great appeal. The story has several storylines and some unexpected twists, and certainly is not without a strong view on society. Definitely rich enough to see more than once.

Penélope Cruz is a stunning beauty but I'm not very impressed by her acting. It seems more like she was typecasted into the right role. She managed to remain totally emotionless in key moments of the movie where her character must have experienced a whirlwind of emotions. The nice acting by other parts kind of makes up for it though.

During the movie there's a struggle between the telling of the story and the showing of situations illustrating characters' personalities in an artistic, isolated way. Switching between these two modes made both the story harder to follow and interrupted the artistic athmosphere the movie could have had.

Despite all this it's nice to see such a different approach on film making, and also to see something different than the usual Hollywood 'conveyor belt' productions.


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