PARALLEL MOTHERS – Review by Martha K Baker

In film after film, Spanish director Pedro Almodóvar has built a reputation as a man who understands women. With Parallel Mothers, he also proves that women belong not just in the home but also in the world. He layers stories to underscore an understanding of the force that is woman.

Read more

MOVIE OF THE WEEK December 24, 2021: PARALLEL MOTHERS

Pedro Almodovar is no stranger to telling compelling stories about complex women, from Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown to All About My Mother to Volver and more. His streak continues with Parallel Mothers, an emotional drama about connection, coincidence, and the ties that bind us. Penelope Cruz and Milena Smit star as two women whose lives are irrevocably entwined after they give birth in the same hospital on the same day.

Read more

PARALLEL MOTHERS – Review by Susan Wloszczyna

Motherhood is central to the plot but there is so much more, including suspenseful Hitchcockian overtones and a dollop of high-end soap opera. But Almodovar also tosses in a political theme this time when Peneolpe Cruz’s 40-ish professional photographer Janis is assigned to shoot a hunky forensic anthropologist. She reaches out to him to see if he can exhume the remains of some relatives who were forced to dig their own graves by fascist murderers during the Spanish Civil War. It’s a rare time that this auteur has brought politics into one of his twisty cinematic equations as the present and past collide.

Read more

PARALLEL MOTHERS (NYFF21) – Review by Valerie Kalfrin

Writer-director Pedro Almodóvar spins a twisty tale of motherhood, identity, and family amid a historical reckoning. While resolving the drama between two new mothers, the film addresses the issue of persons who were disappeared during the Franco regime in Spain. Parallel Mothers makes us ponder just what motherhood and family entail.

Read more

GARBO THE SPY – Retroview by Jennifer Merin

This wonderfully entertaining and educating documentary is a real life spy thriller that profiles the mystery man, a double agent during World War II, who who changed the course of history. He was the most important, successful and daring spy of his day, an unidentified legend in his own time, the only one to receive distinguished service honors from both the British and Germans.

Read more

FIRE WILL COME – Review by Diane Carson

Faithful to the film’s title, director Oliver Laxe doesn’t disappoint. And when an horrendous conflagration arrives in Galicia, the firestorm is reminiscent of the recent devastating California and Colorado infernos. The leadup adds dreaded anticipation primarily because of its slow, understated presentation of the central character, a convicted arsonist named Amador.

Read more

THE AUGUST VIRGIN – Review by Diane Carson

This is decidedly co-writer Itsaso Arana’s film and playing the lead character, Eva, she gloriously owns it. Such a central female character is exceptional, especially the female friendships, though the importance of romantic connections qualifies that progressive element. Nevertheless, engagingly, admirably, Arana searches for her authentic self and takes us with her.

Read more

THE AUGUST VIRGIN – Review by April Neale

The August Virgin is an immersive Sangria-soaked sight-seeing trip to Madrid during the month when many of its citizens abandon her. This film will likely resonate more for women than it will with men. You will recognize many of the emotions and longings that Eva has come to consider in her quiet metamorphosis into female adulthood.

Read more

ARDE MADRID – Review by Alexandra Heller-Nicholas

Perfectly scripted, cast and performed, this Spanish episodic about Ava Gardner’s sojourn in 1960s Madrid, is a wildly racy and hilariously funny series that sure-handedly weaves together narrative threads as disparate as a sexy stone, a table-top dancing goat and Juan Peron in exile. Hilariously funny, Arde Madrid is a reminder that not all meaningful feminist stories need be told with a sledgehammer.

Read more

Australia’s 2019 Moro Spanish Film Festival – Alexandra Heller-Nicholas reports

As demonstrated by this carefully curated selection of eleven films, the future is bright for Spanish and Latin American women filmmakers and this program is a rare opportunity to see their work presented on the big screen in Australia.

Read more