Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBB.
Spain/France, 1995. CiBy 2000, El Deseo. Screenplay by Pedro Almodovar, based on the short story The Lovely Leave by Dorothy Parker. Cinematography by Affonso Beato. Produced by Esther García. Music by Alberto Iglesias. Production Design by Esther Garcia. Costume Design by Hugo Mezcua. Film Editing by José Salcedo.
Critics were taken by surprise when director Pedro Almodovar took a sharp turn from his wickedly raunchy Kika and made this powerfully subtle drama. Having since been followed by his wonderful Live Flesh and excellent All About My Mother, The Flower of My Secret was definitely a sign of good things to come. A lonely writer (Marisa Paredes) is so distraught over her failing marriage that she is having trouble writing her critiques of the fluffy romance novels that she frequently reviews. It doesn’t help that she is also the author of those romance novels under a pseudonym. The story mainly focuses on the inner turmoil she endures as her two jobs present two different personalities that are constantly in conflict. Paredes is top-notch in the role, persistently fascinating every step of the way, and Almodovar’s direction is, as usual, scintillating. Those who enjoy this one should also see High Heels, starring Paredes and Victoria Abril.