Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBBB
Original title: Todo Sobre Mi Madre
Spain/France, 1999. El Deseo, Renn Productions, France 2 Cinéma, Vía Digital. Screenplay by Pedro Almodovar. Cinematography by Affonso Beato. Music by Alberto Iglesias. Production Design by Antxon Gomez. Costume Design by Jose Maria de Cossio, Bina Daigeler. Film Editing by José Salcedo.
Pedro Almodovar offers us his best work yet with this touching and emotionally lyrical film about a nurse (Cecilia Roth in a world class performance) who leaves Madrid for Barcelona following a personal tragedy, looking to find the man with whom she has a story with loose ends. Instead of finding him, however, she befriends a down-on-her-luck transsexual (Antonia San Juan), an HIV-positive nun (Penelope Cruz) and a tragically unhappy actress (Marisa Paredes) with a drug-addicted girlfriend (Candela Peña). Almodovar once again gives dignity and grace to characters who would be seen as nothing more than sideshow freaks for someone else, creating real emotional life that overcomes the sometimes unimaginative plot. It has humour, charm and oh so much sexy elegance.
The Criterion Collection: #1012
Academy Award: Best Foreign Language Film
Cannes Film Festival Award: Best Director (Pedro Almodovar)
European Film Awards: Best European Film; Best European Actress (Cecilia Roth)
Golden Globe Award: Best Foreign Language Film