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I was so excited… … but no more. I’m So Excited misses the mark by adam hawboldt

Photo: Courtesy of ph

I

f you’ve never heard of director Pedro Almodóvar, you should look him up. Give his movies a watch. In the early going, his films were highly stylized romps about cultural and sexual freedom. Full of colour and élan, these early comedies were funny and racy and made Almodóvar the toast of Spanish cinema. Rightfully so. Anyone who has ever seen his first film (Pepi, Luci, Bom

fact, they were damn fine movies. All of them. But when it was announced that his new film, I’m So Excited, was a return to his old, screwball, sex-farce ways, Almodóvar fans had high hopes. Too bad I’m So Excited didn’t live up to them. Sure, there are parts of the movie that work. The premise of the thing is that a plane, traveling from Madrid to Mexico City, gets its landing gear stuck and must circle round and round the airport. The crew and

It’s too full of camp. Too light and clichéd and full of stock…characters… Adam Hawboldt

y otras chicas del montón) knows what I’m talking about. The scene featuring a golden shower during a knitting session alone is enough to warrant the director a cult following. He followed that up with the hilarious, screw-ball movie Labyrinth of Passions. Then things took a turn for the darker. When he put out The Skin I Live In and Broken Embraces, many Almodóvar fans sat straight up in their seats and thought, “What the hell is happening here?” To understand it in more North American terms, it’d be like John Waters doing a PG comedy or Quentin Tarantino putting out a romantic comedy. And that’s not to say Almodóvar’s darker films were bad. They weren’t. In

business class folk talk of sex and corruption after the coach passengers on the plane have been drugged to sleep. That, in and of itself, is a splendid allegory for Spain’s economy these days. So that works. So too does the film as a somewhat serious meditation on life and death. But other than the big, over-arching aspects of I’m So Excited, everything else falls flat. It’s too full of camp. Too light and clichéd and full of stock, onedimensional characters to be good. There’s the three flamingly gay flight attendants, the movie star, the dominatrix, the virgin psychic, the embezzler, the Mexican dude with the glorious moustache. There’s a bag of

i’m so excited Pedro Almodóvar Starring Javier Camara, Antonio de la Torre, Raul Arevalo + Hugo Silva Directed by

90 minutes | NR

mescaline someone has stashed you know where, there’s the flight attendant (Javier Camara) who drinks too much tequila, there’s a pilot, a wife, and a homosexual affair. Yep, I’m So Excited is that kind of movie. Think Airplane! … but in Spanish, and nowhere near as hilarious. But let’s not be too harsh. There are one or two genuinely funny parts in the film. The acting is okay and, as with almost all Almodóvar movies, the sets are loud, glamorous, and eye-catching. Yet when you sit down to watch this and the words “Everything in this film is fantasy, and bears no relation to reality” show up on the screen, take them seriously. There’s nothing real about this movie. It’s just a light-hearted romp created by a director who aimed for something and didn’t quite hit the mark. I’m So Excited is currently being screened at Broadway Theatre.

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21 Aug 16 – Aug 22 @verbsaskatoon

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Verb Issue S253 (Aug. 16-22, 2013)  

Verb Issue S253 (Aug. 16-22, 2013)

Verb Issue S253 (Aug. 16-22, 2013)  

Verb Issue S253 (Aug. 16-22, 2013)

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