Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBBB. Spain, 2002. El Deseo, Antena 3 Televisión, Good Machine, Vía Digital. Screenplay by Pedro Almodovar. Cinematography by Javier Aguirresarobe. Music by Alberto Iglesias. Production Design by Antxon Gomez. Costume Design by Sonia Grande. Film Editing by José Salcedo. Academy Awards 2002. Golden Globe Awards 2002. National Board of Review Awards 2002. New York Film Critics Awards 2002. Toronto International Film Festival 2002.
Benigno (Javier Cámara) is a nurse who is deeply obsessed with comatose Alicia (Leonor Watling), whom he takes care of at the hospital where he works. Marco (Darío Grandinetti) is in love with Lidia (Rosario Flores), a bullfighter who has just fallen into a coma herself after a terrible accident in the ring. These two men meet and become closely bonded friends in this touching story that is beautifully accentuated by scenes of musical and dance performances. Whereas Marco can’t feel close to the now brain-dead woman that he once loved for her zesty personality, Benigno can’t distance himself from his love of the woman he manages to have complete control over. Almodovar’s characters become more beautifully humane every time he writes a script, and this film’s exceptionally powerful story is a great testament to that: its passionate emotions will stay with you long after the end credits roll. Also features a delightful cameo appearance by Geraldine Chaplin.