Spain, 1987, 102 min, Dir. Pedro Almodóvar, Rated NC-17, Spanish with English subtitles
“This wild man has a true talent.” – Pauline Kael, The New Yorker
A love triangle is bound to turn deadly! Pablo (Eusebio Poncela) loves Juan (Miguel Molina) but Juan is lukewarm about the relationship. Antonio (Antonio Banderas) becomes obsessed with Pablo after one evening intended to be a mere one-night stand. Paralleling this love triangle is the story of Pablo’s sister Tina (Carmen Maura), a transgender woman who had a heartbreaking affair with their father. Only blood can resolve this web of entanglements drowned in desire, jealousy, and deceit. Law of Desire was the first recipient of the Berlin Film Festival’s Teddy Award, given to the best LGBT film.
There’s no greater joy for a film programmer than to come across a totally original filmmaker, in complete command of his domain, whose work resembles no one else’s. Such was my elation at discovering the films of Pedro Almodóvar and programming them - for the first time in the U.S. - starting in 1984, year one of the Miami Film Festival. Today, he’s not only the most celebrated Spanish filmmaker, but one of the world’s greatest directors, period. Our series surveys ten classics made over the course of 25 years, and feature not only his famous ensemble, fondly referred to as chicos y chicas Almodóvar, but also actors like Antonio Banderas, Penélope Cruz and Javier Bardem who went on to international stardom.
CGAC Director of Programming Nat Chediak was founder/director of the Miami Film Festival (1984-2001).
Program notes adapted from MoMA’s Almodóvar retrospective.