José Maria is a seventeen year old boy; his father is a successful restaurant owner in a town some distance from Barcelona, in Spain. The boy is intelligent and sensitive, but his mannerisms and habits, and lack of masculine drive, lead him to get bullied at school. The school principal decides that José is the disruptive influence, and asks for him to be removed from the school. The father berates the boy, and his mother, for his failure to be a red-blooded young man, and sends him away for a while to live with a friend in the country. Father visits the boy, and takes him to a strip club in Barcelona, run by a lady friend of his, intending that this will "cure" him of his sexual reserve. However one of the acts is a pre-operative transsexual, and there is a full frontal exposure at the end. [The transsexual is Bibí Andersen, in her first big screen wole; she went on to play is several of Pedro Almodovar's films.] Father has arranged that after the show, the lady friend will take José... Written by
I didn't have a much knowledge of Spanish cinema until I started to watch Almodovar/Aranda movies. Sure you can't put them on same rate. They share only two things - a lot of sex scenes and Victoria Abril. It was interesting to see, how it all started. Here we can see 17-years old Abril playing teenager named Jose Maria with identity problem. Not easiest part to do, but she manages perfectly - as always. After getting himself into lots of trouble, Jose Maria finally becomes a dancer in night club and manages to find his love. Besides Victoria Abril we can see here a real transsexual Bibiana Andersen/Fernandez, who might to drive any man insane only with one look (in positive meaning only). She starrs as herself and Jose Maria's spiritual teacher. She's a quite good actress, really. Too bad Almodovar didn't gave her big enough parts. However her screen relationships with Jose Maria didn't last too long, and this is one part in the script that I hated. As about script in particular - it could be much better. Starts OK, continiues slowly, ending sloppy. The whole movie is generally cute, but not much else. Though, it worth watching because of Abril and Andersen. If you want to spend your time watching something nice and not too depressing - go for it.
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