When it appears as though the end is in sight, the pilots, flight crew, and passengers of a plane heading to Mexico City look to forget the anguish of the moment and face the greatest danger, which we carry within ourselves.
Ex-bullfighter who is getting turned on by killing, lady lawyer with same problem and young man driven insane by over-religious upbringing - these are the main characters in this stylish ... See full summary »
A brilliant plastic surgeon, haunted by past tragedies, creates a type of synthetic skin that withstands any kind of damage. His guinea pig: a mysterious and volatile woman who holds the key to his obsession.
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
In what has now customarily become known as the New Queer Cinema, Almodovar's "Law of Desire" must be seen as a landmark film. Opening with a naked man masturbating and being guided through the motions by the disembodied voice of 'the director', this turns out to be something of a red-herring, though it does establish that the film's central character is a director, (Almodovar?), and that he is gay. What follows is a teasing Hitchcockain menage-a-trois murder yarn, (not mystery), in which the homosexuality of the protagonists is very much to the fore and is hardly seen as 'an issue', (a major breakthrough in what was a mainstream Spanish movie of its day). Indeed "Law of Desire" was the film which really established Almodovar internationally and while gay-themed movies were finally making their mark in 1987 few were quite as explicitly erotic or as pleasurably in-your-face as this.
Its cast was largely made up of what only be described as players from Almodovar's stock company and in a fine cast Antonio Banderas and Carmen Maura are the stand-outs; he as a pathologically disturbed 'fan' whose obsession with Eusebio Puncela's director leads to murder and she as the director's transsexual 'sister', a deliriously giddy performance and yet played mostly 'straight' by Maura.
If not quite as deep as Almodovar's later movies there is nevertheless much to enjoy here, (and although dealing with tragic issues Almodovar teases out the black comedy for all its worth). Now, of course, a great deal of the fun is in slotting the film into the Almodovar canon and seeing exactly where it fits in relation to the movies that followed it.
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