A nightclub singer seeks refuge with gay nuns on dope in a Madrid convent.

Director:

Pedro Almodóvar (as Pedro Almodovar)

Writer:

Pedro Almodóvar (as Pedro Almodovar)
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1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Cristina Sánchez Pascual ... Yolanda (as Cristina S. Pascual)
Will More ... Jorge (as Willmore)
Laura Cepeda ... Lina
Miguel Zúñiga Miguel Zúñiga ... Madero (as Miguel Zuñiga)
Julieta Serrano ... Superiora
Marisa Paredes ... Sor Estiercol
Mary Carrillo ... Marquesa (as Mari Carrillo)
Carmen Maura ... Sor Perdida
Lina Canalejas ... Sor Víbora
Manuel Zarzo ... Capellán
Chus Lampreave ... Sor Rata
Marisa Tejada Marisa Tejada ... Lola
Eva Siva Eva Siva ... Antonia
Cecilia Roth ... Merche
Rubén Tobías Rubén Tobías ... Policía (as Ruben Tobias)
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Storyline

Yolanda sings in a seedy nightclub. When her boyfriend dies of an overdose, she fears the police and seeks refuge in a convent that saves women from the streets. These off-beat nuns include a heroin using abbess who loves Yolanda, one who writes romance novels under a pseudonym, another raising a tiger in the convent yard, and one who designs fabulous fashions and is in love with the local priest. They plan an evening extravaganza starring Yolanda to celebrate the abbess's birthday and to convince their wealthy patron not to abandon them. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

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Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?

Trivia

Alicia Hermida was offered the role of Sor Rata de Callejón, but her schedule didn't allow her to do it. Once Pedro Almodóvar knew this, he gave the part to Chus Lampreave, who previously had a smaller role. See more »

Goofs

The "Salí porque salí" song is obviously not sung by Yolanda nor the backing vocalists. See more »

Quotes

Superiora: The Marquise has fallen to the worst vice. Stinginess.
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Connections

References My Fair Lady (1964) See more »

Soundtracks

Encadenados
Written by Carlos Arturo Bris (as Carlos Arturo Briz)
Performed by Lucho Gatica
Edited by Emi Odeón
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User Reviews

 
Sister Act with the Almodovar Touch
23 April 2012 | by blanche-2See all my reviews

"Dark Habits" from 1983 was Pedro Almodovar's first film made with a decent producer, film company, and budget. There are signs of his later brilliance in films like "Woman on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown" and "All About My Mother," but even for the quirky Almodovar, this is one strange film.

"Sister Act" is vaguely reminiscent of this movie, only in the fact that "Dark Habits" concerns Yolanda, a nightclub performer (Cristina Sánchez Pascual) whose boyfriend (Will More) overdoses while she's in his apartment. Yolanda panics, afraid she will be accused of killing him by the police, so, wearing her red sequined gown, she hides out in a Madrid convent.

This is unlike any convent depicted before or since. Some of the nuns, like Yolanda herself, are drug addicts, doing heroin and coke. One nun has a pet tiger. Another writes sexy novels under a pseudonym. Another nun designs fashions and is in love with the local priest. The Mother Superior is a lesbian and falls in love with Yolanda. The nuns all have strange names, depicting that man is the lowest form of animal: Sister Snake, Sister Rat, etc.

The big problem at the convent at the moment is that the Marquesa (Mary Carillo), now that her generous husband is dead, has decided to withdraw patronage from the convent. One of the nuns gets information about the Marquesa's daughter and decides to blackmail her with it.

"Dark Habits," I believe, suggests the Movida Madrilenia, a hedonistic countercultural movement that took place in Madrid after the death of Franco. It was meant to represent a new Spanish identity, an identity characterized by freedom of expression, use of recreational drugs, and even a new dialect. It was a hedonistic culture that more or less destroyed itself by the overuse of heroin. At the end of the era, Madrid was left with drug addicts, dead junkies, people leaving Madrid for their original hometowns, and for others, rehabilitation and a useful life.

The convent serves as a microcosm of this movement. Here one sees art, drugs, music, and homosexuality.

A fascinating if sometimes uncomfortable film, and certainly not representative of the later Almodovar, who himself has distanced himself from this offbeat, dark film.


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Details

Country:

Spain

Language:

Spanish

Release Date:

3 October 1983 (Spain) See more »

Also Known As:

Dark Habits See more »

Filming Locations:

Madrid, Spain

Company Credits

Production Co:

Tesauro See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (DVD)

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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