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After her death, a mother returns to her home town in order to fix the situations she couldn't resolve during her life.

Director:

Pedro Almodóvar

Writer:

Pedro Almodóvar (screenplay)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 61 wins & 90 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Penélope Cruz ... Raimunda
Carmen Maura ... Irene
Lola Dueñas ... Sole
Blanca Portillo ... Agustina
Yohana Cobo ... Paula
Chus Lampreave ... Tía Paula
Antonio de la Torre ... Paco
Carlos Blanco Carlos Blanco ... Emilio
María Isabel Díaz María Isabel Díaz ... Regina (as Mª Isabel Díaz)
Neus Sanz Neus Sanz ... Inés
Leandro Rivera ... Auxiliar Producción
Pepa Aniorte Pepa Aniorte ... Vecina
Yolanda Ramos ... Presentadora TV
Elvira Cuadrupani ... Vecina
María Alfonsa Rosso ... Vecina (as Alfonsa Rosso)
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Storyline

Raimunda, her daughter Paula and her sister Sole travel from Madrid to the windy and superstitious village of Alcanfor de las Infantas to visit the grave of their mother Irene, who died years ago in a fire with her husband. Then they visit Irene's sister Paula, an old senile aunt that raised Raimunda after the death of her parents that insists to tell them that Irene is alive and living with her; later, they go to the house of her neighbor and friend Agustina, who gives a support to Paula. They return to Madrid, and after a hard day of work, Raimunda meets her daughter completely distraught at the bus stop waiting for her. When they arrive home, Paula tells her mother that she killed her unemployed father Paco, who was completely drunk and tried to rape her. While Raimunda hides his body, Sole calls her to tell that their beloved aunt Paula has died. The next morning, Sole travels alone to the funeral, and when she returns to Madrid, she finds her mother hidden in the trunk of her car... Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Crime | Drama | Mystery

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some sexual content and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Spain

Language:

Spanish

Release Date:

26 January 2007 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

To Return See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

€7,450,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

€1,783,597 (Spain), 17 March 2006, Limited Release

Opening Weekend USA:

$197,703, 5 November 2006, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$12,899,867, 24 May 2007

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$85,585,147, 4 May 2008
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby | Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The movie that Irene watches on TV is Bellissima (1951), starring Anna Magnani as a fame-hungry, working class mother who drags her unwilling daughter to the Cinecitta film studios in Rome for a movie audition. There is a parallel in the film, as Raimunda mentions that Agustina's fame-hungry sister once dragged her to Madrid for a singing audition. See more »

Goofs

(at around 1h 30 mins) When Agustina is talking on the TV show about her mother's vanishing, she says that it happened "hace ya casi cuatro años" ("nearly four years ago"), yet her lips are clearly saying "hace ya casi tres años" ("nearly three years ago"). See more »

Quotes

Raimunda: [to self] It smells of... farts, my mother's farts.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Me and Earl and the Dying Girl (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

Volver
Music by Carlos Gardel
Lyrics by Alfredo Le Pera (as Alfredo La Pera)
©1961 by Warner/Chappel Music Argentina
Recorded at Sonoland, Madrid (September 2005)
Performed by Estrella Morente
Produced by Enrique Morente
Guitar by Montoyita
Claps by Bandolero, Negri and Pepe Luis Carmona
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
100% Almodóvar
19 March 2006 | by markus_riaSee all my reviews

I saw this film yesterday and it got me thinking well after I had left the cinema. It made me cry and it made me laugh. It is a choral film where women (as usual with Almodóvar) have the upper hand. I'm not a big fan of Penélope but I must admit she's really up to scratch this time. She has clearly fed on Sofia Loren to come up with the very credible character of Raimunda: tight skirts, high heels and generous cleavage. Carmen Maura and Lola Dueñas are simply magnificent. Also Chus Lampreave as Tía Paula (even in a too-short appearance inspired in Almodóvar's mother) is superb. Almodóvar himself has admitted that this is one of his most personal films, set in his home region of La Mancha and full of memories of his own childhood. Great music too. The moment of the tango ("Volver" by C. Gardel) turned into flamenco really makes you break in goose pimples. However, it is not Penélope's voice, but flamenco-star Estrella Morente's. If you like Almodóvar, you will certainly like this film.


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