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Passion, obsession, wealth, jealousy, family, guilt, and creativity. In Madrid, Harry Caine is a blind screenwriter, assisted by Judit and her son Diego. The past comes rushing in when Harry learns of the death of Ernesto Martel, a wealthy businessman, and Ernesto's son pays Harry a visit. In a series of flashbacks to the 1990s, we see Harry, who was then Mateo Blanco, a director; he falls in love with Ernesto's mistress, Lena, and casts her in a film, which Ernesto finances. Ernesto is jealous and obsessive, sending his son to film the making of the movie, to follow Lena and Mateo, and to give him the daily footage. Judit doesn't like Lena. It's a collision course. Written by
This film was a deliberate reunion by Pedro Almodóvar with a lot of actresses who have worked with him over years. Not only Penélope Cruz and Blanca Portillo, but small parts for Ángela Molina, Chus Lampreave, Lola Dueñas, Carmen Machi, Rossy de Palma and Kiti Mánver. See more »
During the 1994 storyline, after Mateo is released from the hospital Judit drops him off at the beach with her son Diego. As they exit the vehicle a crew member can be seen reflected in the rear panel of the car. See more »
[in Spanish, quoting English subtitles]
What's your name?
I used to be called Mateo and I was a film director. I was always tempted by the idea of being someone else, as well as myself. Living one's life wasn't enough, so I invented a pseudonym, Harry Caine, an adventurer who, as fate would have it, became a writer. I had him sign all the scripts and stories I wrote. For years, Mateo Blanco and Harry Caine shared the same body, mine. But a moment came when ...
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In 1992, in Madrid, the secretary and escort girl Lena (Penélope Cruz) becomes the mistress of the powerful entrepreneur Ernesto Martel (José Luis Gómez) that is her boss and takes care of her terminal father. In the present days, the blind screenwriter Mateo Blanco (Lluís Homar) known by his code name Harry Caine meets a beautiful blonde (Kira Miró) on the street that offers to read the newspaper for him and tells that Ernesto Matel has died. Then his agent Judit García (Blanca Portillo) and her son Diego (Tamar Novas) arrive and Harry promises to end the screenplay that he is writing until the end of the day. Judit leaves the apartment and Harry is visited by a man code named X-Ray (Rubén Ochandiano) that introduces himself as a filmmaker and asks Harry to write the screenplay of his documentary about his intolerant father. Harry recognizes him, refuses the request, sends him away and recalls the year of 1994, when he was casting for his film "Chicas Y Maletas" and met Lena. Sooner they fall in love for each other and Ernesto Martel, who was the producer, sends his homosexual son to prepare the behind scene and making off of the movie. With the support of a reader of lips, the jealous and obsessive Martel daily falls each step of Lena with tragic consequences for the couple of lovers.
"Los Abrazos Partidos" is another magnificent film of the talented Spanish director Pedro Almodóvar, who is among my favorite contemporary directors. The plot has a complex, but perfect screenplay with use of flashbacks with a marvelous development of the characters. Lluís Homar performs the lead character Mateo Blanco a.k.a. Harry Caine (a pun with hurricane) that uses two alternate names of Pedro Almodóvar and has a great performance. His erotic scene with the unknown and extremely gorgeous Kira Miró is astonishing. Penélope Cruz is stunning and has another top-notch performance directed by Almodóvar. The open conclusion is ironic after the remark of Mateo Blanco about "Chicas Y Maletas" and I liked it. My vote is nine.
Title (Brazil): "Abraços Partidos" ("Broken Hugs")
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