A single mother in Madrid sees her only son die on his 17th birthday as he runs to seek an actress's autograph. She goes to Barcelona to find the lad's father, a transgender woman named Lola who does not know she has a child. First she finds her friend, Agrado, a wild yet caring transgender woman; through her she meets Rosa, a young nun bound for El Salvador, but instead finds out she is pregnant by Lola. Manuela becomes the personal assistant of Huma Rojo, the actress her son admired, by helping Huma manage Nina, the co-star and Huma's lover. However, Agrado soon takes over when Manuela must care for Hermana Rosa's risky pregnancy. With echos of Lorca, "All About Eve," and " A Streetcar Named Desire," the mothers (and fathers and actors) live out grief, love, and friendship.Written by
What a genius Almodovar is! Who else could take such esoteric material and make it not only enjoyable, but relatable. It takes a lot of chutzpah for a male director to swan dive into the gulf of womanhood (I can't believe I just wrote that) and emerge with such truth, HUMAN truth. While the characters of this film seem to represent certain female archetypes, they still flow organically through the ingenious plot. Almodovar shows us that any taboo subject can be tackled without it being exploited when it is done with a compassionate heart. The sheer WARMTH of this movie is what makes it a stunning success. The performances in this film are unforgettable. Cecilia Roth is so dazzling and real, and heartbreaking. But only a genius like Almodovar can break our hearts but still give us hope.
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