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.
An ex-bullfighter who gets turned on by killing, a lady lawyer with the same fetish and a young man driven insane by his 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
THE LAW OF DESIRE opened the 1987 Miami Int'l Film Festival. Almodovar and Carmen Maura had already broken through to the American market at this event with WHAT HAVE I DONE TO... a few years earlier. So it was surprising to find them pacing nervously up and down the lobby of the C.Grove Playhouse at THE LAW's North American premiere. They were also in and out of its rest rooms, as the sold out audience roared in laughter and applauded the film, and I was making an early dash to the post-premiere party at the Viscaya Palace. They were acting just like the neurotic characters they bring to life in this and their other films. They were still insecure and frustrated that their huge popularity and celebrity status in Europe was reduced to a recent, almost cult, following in the U.S. They needn't have worried. The film confirmed both of these artists along with Antonio Banderas as stars among North American art movie lovers. (This achievement would be crowned the following year with the triumph of their next collaboration: the Oscar-nominated WOMEN ON THE VERGE...) But THE LAW OF DESIRE will be remembered as Almodovar's self-confessed most personal work, and the masterpiece of his earlier career. This film is pure Almodovar, before he toned down to more mainstream fare. LAW... resumes the Almodovarian style, in all its excesses. It features most of his muses, beyond Maura and Banderas: Rossy dePalma, Bibi Anderssen, Eusebio Poncela, and the rest. His style as a writer/director of women goes over the top here, as does his predilection with telephones, the police, drug use (cocaine in particular), the media, dysfunctional families, sexual ambiguity, the Catholic Church, and the city of Madrid. Almodovar fans will note that all the above themes permeate his work. But nowhere are they so well linked and exposed as in this landmark film.
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