Sexually adventurous Cristina and her friend Vicky, who is bright but cautious, holiday in Barcelona where they meet the celebrated and wholly seductive painter, Juan Antonio. Vicky is not about to dive into a sexual adventure being committed to her forthcoming marriage. But Cristina is immediately captivated by Juan Antonio's free spirit and his romantic allure is enhanced when she hears the delicious details of his divorce from fellow artist, the tempestuous Maria Elena. Written by
Joan Pera: The Spanish actor who has dubbed Woody Allen's voice in several Spanish and Catalan versions of his films for over twenty years appears in the film. See more »
Speaking about Cristina's photography the narrator says that Maria convinces her to use an older camera and she would set up a darkroom for her, etc. implying it would be a film camera. It's clear she continues to use a digital camera and she does not look through the viewfinder but the LCD screen of a digital camera and the photo she just took is on the screen. See more »
Vicky and Cristina decided to spend the summer in Barcelona. Vicky was completing her master's in Catalan Identity, which she had become interested in through her great affection for the architecture of Gaudí. Cristina, who spent the last six months writing, directing, and acting in a 12-minute film which she then hated, had just broken up with yet another boyfriend and longed for a change of scenery. Everything fell into place when a distant relative of Vicky's family who lived in...
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The film opens with a steady flow of stereotypes and despite the expectations of Woody Allen fans, continues with them to the very end. Let's have painters... because they are so romantic and passionate. Let's have Spaniards... because they are hot-blooded and beautiful. Let's have Barcelona... because every scene taken in it looks like a postcard, or something directed by Tourist Office of Barcelona (which is pretty close to the truth considering the City of Barcelona DID pay for much of the film's cost).
The setting and the cast seem to be picked from a poll in a women magazine. Since Antonio Banderas is old news, our readers chose masculine Javier Bardem. For his Spanish partner they chose Penelope Cruz who is not only beautiful, but also the only Spanish actress they have heard of. They also chose Scarlett Johanssen because they would choose her in pretty much any film. And let's have all these beautiful people indulge in wine tasting, flying private airplanes and picking blackberries for breakfast while they muse about art and love, because that's apparently how hot-blooded Spanish painters spend their days in Barcelona.
Allen fails to show the flip side of this fairy tale-like Spanish life style, fails to show a sudden twist, a funny moment, his trade mark wit, or at least a hot threesome scene. Johanssen is the only one showing an interesting performance. Hall, Bardem and Cruz are confined in stereotypical roles, and Bardem even looks embarrassed pushing a Latin lover routine.
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