Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Live Flesh (1997)

Live Flesh (1997)

Live Flesh is a tale of adultery, betrayal and obsession that somehow becomes a love story.  Victor (Liberto Rabal) is a young man who has a one night stand with Elena (Francesca Neri), a junkie.  Though she clearly wants nothing to do with him, he pursues her until an argument turns tragic after David (Javier Bardem) is injured in a shooting while answering a distress call at Elena's home.  Victor is convicted of shooting David and, after serving four years in prison, discovers that David, who can no longer walk, is a famous paraplegic basketball player married to none other than Elena. 

Almodovar's films can be really out there, but sometimes they are fairly straightforward.  Live Flesh is one of those films; it's like a colorful film noir.  Like most Almodovar films, Live Flesh has a twist that alters the course of the plot, and like all of his twists, it's brilliant without being showy. 

I really enjoyed Live Flesh.  It wasn't splashy, but it had a great story and compelling characters.  I tend to lean toward the more fantastic and bizarre Almodovar films, but Live Flesh was really fulfilling.  Out of the Almodovar films I've seen, I can compare it best to Broken Embraces, which is another wonderful film.  It was also kind of fun to see a youngish Javier Bardem, and watch for Penelope Cruz in a small but pivotal role. 

Live Flesh: 3.5/5


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