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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.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Shot in Spain, this movie shows the events in the life of Jose Maria, a teenager with gender identity problems. This is a very dramatic film that shows, the pain and tribulations transgender people go through, from self-mutilation to isolation and abandonment. After much pain and tribulations Jose Maria becomes Maria Jose, and finally finds true love and happiness. This movie is one of the first ones to show in not-too-graphic detail the process of sex change. A very hard to find relic of Spanish cinema, staring Victoria April as Jose Maria/Maria Jose, this film is a must have if only for it's moral/tolerance message.
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