La piel que habito (The Skin I Live In) a film by Pedro Almodovar

This post is bilingual, scroll down for the English language version

La piel que habito (The Skin I Live In) es una película del año 2011 dirigida por Pedro Almodóvar. Está basada en Mygale (1984), una novela de Thierry Jonquet publicada en español como Tarantula (Ediciones B, 2011). Lamentablemente la editorial no menciona el nombre del traductor en su página web. Lo que es indicativo del poco respeto que el mundo editorial tiene por esta noble y necesaria profesión.

La película participó en mayo de 2011 en la edición número 64 del Festival de Cine de Cannes y se estrenó en España el pasado 2 de septiembre. Begoña y yo fuimos a verla el sábado 10 de septiembre.

Sinopsis:  Desde que su mujer murió quemada en un accidente de coche, el doctor Ledgard, eminente cirujano plástico, se interesa por la creación de una nueva piel con la que hubiera podido salvarla. Doce años después consigue cultivarla en su laboratorio, aprovechando los avances de la terapia celular. Para ello no dudará en traspasar una puerta hasta ahora terminantemente vedada: la transgénesis con seres humanos. Pero ése no será el único crimen que cometerá en La piel que habito.

De este proyecto, Almodóvar dice: “Es una historia durísima de venganza, con chicos y chicas y un personaje muy diabólico que me está costando ponerme en su piel”. También ha declarado que esta película es un “intenso drama que a veces se inclina por el noir, a veces por la ciencia ficción y otras por el terror”. Al término del rodaje declaró que sus películas siempre han sido “difíciles de clasificar en cuanto a género”. “Suelo mezclar varios y cuando hay uno que predomina no respeto todas las reglas”.

La piel que habito es una historia elegante de venganza, muy bien elaborada. Considero una lástima que el talento de Almodóvar tenga más reconocimiento fuera de España. Su estética es única y personal. El argumento fluye con suavidad y reconozco que captó mi atención durante toda la proyección. Todos los elementos encajan perfectamente en la película. Pero dicho esto tengo que admitir que al final me quedé completamente indiferente. Es sólo una película más de Almodóvar, pero no estoy entusiasmado con ella. Muy bien hecha, pero sin contenido para mi gusto.

Mi calificación: 6/10.

Página web oficial

The Skin I Live In a film by Pedro Almodovar

La piel que habito (The Skin I Live In) is a 2011 film by Pedro Almodóvar. It is loosely based on Mygale (1984), a novel by Thierry Jonquet published in English as Tarantula in 2005 by Serpent’s Tail. Unfortunately the publisher does not mention the name of the translator on its web site. A clear indication of the little respect to this noble and necessary profession by the publishing world.

The film, premiered in May 2011 in competition at the 64th Cannes Film Festival, was released in Spain on 2 September 2011. Begoña and I went to see the film on 10 September.

Synopsis: Since his wife burned to death in a car accident, Dr. Ledgard, a prominent plastic surgeon, is interested in creating a new skin that could have saved her. Twelve years later he achieves success in his laboratory, taking advantage of advances in cell therapy. He will not hesitate to run through a strictly forbidden gate: transgenesis with human beings. But this is not the only crime that he will commit in The Skin I Live In.

About his project, Almodóvar said, “It’s a harsh story of revenge, with boys and girls and a very evil character that I find difficult to put myself in his place.” He has also stated that this film is an “intense drama that sometimes falls into noir, sometimes into science fiction and others into terror“. At the end of the shooting he said that his films have always been “difficult to classify in genre terms.” “I usually mix different genres and when one is prevailing I do not comply with its rules.”

The Skin I Live In is an elegant tale of revenge, very nicely crafted. I consider it a shame that Almodovar’s talents have more recognition abroad. His aesthetic is quite unique and personal. The plot flows smoothly and I recognise that it caught my attention during the entire projection. All the elements fit perfectly well into the film. But having said that I have to admit that at the end I was left completely indifferent. It is just one more film by Almodovar but I’m not excited about it. Perfectly well done, but with no content for my taste.

My rating: 6/10.

Official web site

Happy Birthday from The Game’s Afoot

Today marks the 121 anniversary of Agatha Christie. For this reason Kerrie at Mysteries in Paradise invites us to write a post on our own blog in whatever way we wish, put in a link to Celebrate Agatha’s birthday with us – September 15, advertise the event and visit the other participating blogs.

Unfortunately I have not had much time lately to prepare a suitable blog post. But in any case, I do not want to miss this opportunity to participate in this event. For this reason I have chosen this gem among her countless short stories, Witness for the Prosecution.

This is one of her most popular titles, originally published as Traitor Hands (Flynn’s Weekly edition of 31 January 1925). It appeared in the collection The Hound of Death, published in 1933 in the United Kingdom. The USA had to wait until 1948 when it was included in the collection The Witness for the Prosecution and Other Stories. It was adapted by Christie into a successful stage play in 1953. And Christie wrote in her autobiography:  

“It was one of my plays that I liked best myself. I was nearly as satisfied with that play as I have been with any.”

In 1957 it became a memorable film directed by Billy Wilder, starring Tyrone Power, Marlene Dietrich, Charles Laughton, and with Elsa Lanchester’s participation.

To recall it briefly, I cut and paste the plot from the official Agatha Christie web site. 

Leonard Vole, is arrested for the murder of his elderly friend Emily French. Because Emily made him her beneficiary, unaware he was a married man, things look bad for Leonard. When his wife acts as a witness for the prosecution – things turn from bad to worse! Can his lawyer unravel the increasingly complex relationships at the heart of this mystery?

I hope you’ll enjoy it as much as I do whenever I read it again. A masterpiece.

Witness for the Prosecution