All About My Mother




“Spanish director Pedro Almodovar doesn’t seem, at first glance, to be the sort of filmmaker who would succeed in painting a warm and honest picture of motherhood. Almodovar has always made interesting, distinctive films, but he’s best known for his ability to combine everyday characters with eccentrics and put both into outrageous and often humorous situations. He isn’t nearly as well known for touching audiences emotionally. It’s far more common to take in Almodovar’s outrageous situations from an emotional distance, such as those in his funny and entertaining 1990 film, Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down! With All About My Mother, the Spanish director completely blows away any sense of emotional isolation with a film that includes his usual outrageous characters and unusual situations, but also makes a powerful emotional connection.

The film revolves around Manuela (Cecilia Roth), who is a Madrid nurse who deals with organ transplants and is also the single mother of the teen-aged Esteban (Eloy Azorin). Manuela faces a series of remarkable challenges and tragedies, finds herself starting life afresh, and reminiscing about how she had to do the same thing some 18 years earlier. Manuela is a levelheaded, strong woman who is surrounded by colourful characters, including a pregnant nun, a transvestite prostitute, and an actress with a big ego. She has made more than her share of mistakes over the years, but through it all, she has been there for the people she loves. “


Brian Webster


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