Tuesday, November 30

Penelope Cruz closes the circle | Culture


With Parallel mothers a circle is closed in the life and work of Penelope Cruz. The actress was crowned this Saturday in Venice with a character that she has made her own with the tenacity and dedication that characterizes her already extensive and applauded career. But it is not just another character, because Janis, that single mother, daughter of a hippy Junkie facing a dilemma about truth and orphanhood, about where we come from and where we, as a collective and individuals, are headed, sums up his own place in the world and, by extension, in the cinematography of his main accomplice, Pedro Almodóvar.

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Penélope Cruz made her debut in Almodóvar’s cinema 24 years ago in a role that at first could seem residual: a woman in labor on a public bus in a dark morning of the late Franco regime. The midwife in that brief appearance was Pilar Bardem, Javier Bardem’s mother, who, due to those strange hazards in life, ended up being his mother-in-law. That character of Aspen meat seized the film in such a way that since then Almodóvar found in the actress one of his main interlocutors, an interpreter who is especially comfortable and free when faced with the demands of the filmmaker, an actress who has known how to grow up on the robust arms of a director that when in Pain and glory, his most autobiographical film, he thought of his own mother, or rather in the dream of his mother, an iconic figure on whom much of his life and his filmography circulates, he could only trust Cruz, mother among mothers, that mother absolute, as Almodóvar himself has defined it when speaking of this new character in Parallel mothers.

And Return It was the recognition of its actresses at the 2006 Cannes Film Festival, Parallel mothers confirms the Madrid interpreter as the great standard of Almodóvar’s cinema. The actress and the director agree that it has not been an easy road, that she cried inconsolably at the drifts of her character while the director asked her for a containment difficult to manage. A tug of war that is latent throughout this heartbreaking movie.

There is a sequence in Parallel mothers which summarizes the extent to which the director and actress have reached the maximum understanding and communion. In it, before a photograph by Oriol Maspons of a hippy From the Ibiza of the seventies, the character of Janis indicates the precise place of her orphanhood, which is like saying the precise place of her truth. A song by Janis Joplin sounds and the actress, in one of those miracles that only great performers grant, reflects in her mature but still childish face all the goodness and all the shortcomings of a character that hijacks the audience’s emotion.

The mystery is repeated as in that bus in which Penelope Cruz gave birth for the first time to two of the most important people in her life and now, with the purity of someone who always feels on trial, she again illuminates a new milestone in her life. career.


elpais.com

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