Volver – A film review

27 Jan

Penelope Cruz in "Volver"

 

I picked up a Spanish foreign film from the library a few days ago. It stars Penelope Cruz, the 2011 face of Lancome. This 2006 film is titled “Volver” and has English subtitles. I have always liked Penelope and have watched several of her movies such as Pirates of the Caribbean, Blow, Banditas (which is not listed on IMDB but I have a copy and she is great alongside Salma Hayek!) and Vanilla Sky. Those are the movies she is best known for but, she has been in a great deal of others. “Volver” is one such movie that is not a box office best. It is an independent film, directed by Pedro Almodovar.

“Volver” features the lives of a family completely made of females. Penelope plays the lead character, the eldest sister, Raimunda. Raimunda is a mother, sister, daughter, and friend. She works hard at providing for her family and has an uncanny way of making the best out of situations. When her mother seemingly comes back from the dead, there is confusion and rumours from superstitious villagers. Which does not make her life any easier! It is a modern film in which the characters tangle with some pretty taboo subjects; infidelity, drugs, and even murder. Raimunda is strong and has a good sense on how to deal discretely with issues like these! I found the film funny, heartwarming, and full of emotion.

It is rare that I see any media featuring strong everyday women, having regular and frank conversations with each other. Volver is a gem that shines light on how strong women stick together and support each other, even in the face of public humiliation or dirty family laundry. I find it strongly empowering because the women are so powerful even with their trust in emotions and feelings. There is no romantic sub-plot either! This film is a definite serenity ritual, it reminds me to always keep family near. 🙂

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