Movie Review: The Brain in Spain
Intriguing and Cerebral Spanish Flicks
By Lynn Hamilton
Competing with France has been tough going for Spanish film makers. The French established their preeminence in cinema early on with the new wave movement and have clung to their status as Europe's most serious film making country with determination.
But Spain may finally be coming into its own. Spanish film maker Pedro Almodovar gets Academy Award nominations nearly every year. And now Spain has launched a style of film making closely akin to the surrealism of painter Salvador Dali and architect Antonio Gaudi. Two recent films, Abre Los Ojos and El Arte de Morir, aim to capture the terrain of the human subconscious as did Dali and Gaudi.
Abre Los Ojos (Open Your Eyes)
Abre Los Ojos has gotten by far the most attention because it was remade, with indecent haste, as Vanilla Sky, a film that religiously follows the riveting plot of the original but repackages it with brand name American actors and aggressive American distribution and marketing techniques. It has frequently been remarked that Penelope Cruz plays the same part in the original and in the remake, which is what I mean by indecent haste. Remakes are always a little disrespectful, but when they happen instantaneously, it's really a way of saying, "great idea, but somebody needs to do it right."
Movie Reviews: Spanish Films - Continued >>