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Law of Desire (1987)
"La ley del deseo" (original title)

NC-17  |   |  Comedy, Drama, Thriller  |  5 March 1987 (Argentina)
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 7,142 users  
Reviews: 25 user | 33 critic

A film makers sexual disorientation jepordizes his latest project.


(as Pedro Almodovar)


(screenplay), (story)
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Eusebio Poncela ...
Miguel Molina ...
Juan Bermúdez
Fernando Guillén ...
Inspector de policía
Ada, niña
Nacho Martínez ...
Doctor Martín
Bibiana Fernández ...
Ada - madre (as Bibí Andersen)
Helga Liné ...
Madre de Antonio
Germán Cobos ...
El Cura
Policía, chico
Marta Fernández Muro ...
Una Groupi
Lupe Barrado ...
Alfonso Vallejo ...
Maruchi León ...
Hermana de Juan


Pablo and Tina have complicated sexual lives. Pablo writes and directs plays and films; he's gay and deeply in love with Juan, a young man who won't reply to Pablo's affection or letters. Pablo's sibling Tina is a transsexual, angry at men, raising Ada, and trying to make it as an actress. Pablo takes up with Antonio, a youth who becomes jealous of Pablo's love for Juan. Antonio seeks out Juan, and violence leads to Pablo's grief and a temporary loss of memory. When memory returns, he learns that Antonio has taken up with Tina. In horror, he hurries to Tina's rescue and must face Antonio and his desire. Written by <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated NC-17 for a scene of explicit sexual content | See all certifications »




Release Date:

5 March 1987 (Argentina)  »

Also Known As:

A Lei do Desejo  »

Box Office


ESP 240,365,945 (Spain)

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


In the scene where Tina (Carmen Maura) washes dishes in Pablo's (Eusebio Poncela) kitchen, she wears an apron that has the logo for What Have I Done to Deserve This? (1984). The logo is the same one as the one used for the Spanish posters for that film. See more »


Pablo Quintero: It's not your fault if you don't love me and its not my fault if I love you.
See more »


References What Have I Done to Deserve This? (1984) See more »


Susan Get Down
Written by Pedro Almodóvar, Fabio McNamara (as Fabio de Miguel) & Bernardo Bonezzi
Performed by Pedro Almodóvar & Fabio McNamara (as Almodóvar & McNamara)
See more »

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User Reviews

Excellent movie
10 March 2000 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

One of director Almodovars early films--and one of his best. A gay writer is basically stalked by a psychopath. The films manages to weave together comedy, drama and tragedy and make them all work! Also it manages to work in fairly explicit gay sex scenes and male nudity without it being exploitative--it just fits the storyline and characters. The movie takes a serious misstep about halfway through, throwing in a murder, but manages to regain its footing. The acting is pretty good--not great. Antonio Banderas is so-so as the psycho. I give him credit for engaging in gay sex scenes with no hesitation (I'd love to know what he thinks about this movie now!). The best thing about the movie is the direction--even when the story bogs down in spots, there's always something to look at on screen. Almodovar knows how to make films look beautiful and he, somehow, manages to have the settings fit the tone of the scene. How many directors can you say that about. An excellent film--well worth seeing. But if you're offended by explicit gay subject matter, stay away.

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