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Movies: Identity Crises with Antonio Banderas, Glenn Close and Marilyn Monroe

Skin-pedrolivesin
Pedro Almodóvar And His Latest Plaything from "The Skin I Live In"

GuestbloggerNATHANIEL ROGERS
...would live in the movie theater but for the poor internet reception. He blogs daily at the Film Experience. Follow him on Twitter @nathanielr.

 
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This weekend at the multiplex it's the battle of the 80s remakes with sci-fi horror film THE THING (previously in theaters in 1982) vs. "everybody cut everybody cut" dance drama FOOTLOOSE (previously in theaters in 1984). The latter proudly and absurdly waves a "this is our time" tagline despite being a remake of another generation's touchstone.

Skin-tiemeupBut no matter. The only one that truly matters is Pedro Almodóvar's new gem THE SKIN I LIVE IN. While it's not quite on the level of his five masterworks (Law of Desire, Women on the Verge...All About My Mother, Talk To Her, and Volver if you ask me) very few films are. Second tier Almodóvar is still better than most movies made in any given year. For his latest he's reunited with his only male muse Antonio Banderas for their sixth film together and their first since Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down! (1990) in which sexy Antonio held a beautiful woman prisoner until she loved him. Twenty-one years later and Antonio is up to his old Stockholm Syndrome tactics again. This time he's a brilliant cold plastic surgeon and the woman he's holding captive (Elena Anaya) seems to be a semi-willing guineau pig in a series of illegal surgeries which will give her flawless new skin. But why does he keep her locked up? What exactly happened to the surgeon's wife and daughter who are nowhere to be seen? How long has this been going on? 

Like most Almodóvar films this one is novelistic with intriguing details that could make their own movies, has themes of identity and sexuality that are of interest to LGBT audiences, features smartly executed twists which bring the story into perverse focus, and wows with stunning imagery including simple but freakishly haunting costumes from Paco Delgado (with an assist from Jean Paul Gaultier). I hate to quote Peter Travers from Rolling Stone since his whole raison d'etre as a film critic is to be quoted but they used to promote Pedro's movies with this blurb:

"Pedro Almodóvar doesn't just make movies. Almodóvar is the movies."

A more succinct and correct appraisal I've rarely read.

BONUS SCENES

 roadDid you know they had personal trailers in the 19th century? How else to explain Aaron Johnson's physique in Albert Nobbs?

More identity crises AFTER THE JUMP...

Albert-aaronjohnson-body

Continue reading "Movies: Identity Crises with Antonio Banderas, Glenn Close and Marilyn Monroe" »


Chicago's Colossal Marilyn Monroe 'Seven Year Itch' Sculpture: PHOTO

Marilyn

And upskirt photo pervs rejoice. (via chicago tribune)


News: Dolce and Gabbana, Volcano, Tel Aviv, Andrew Cuomo

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Dg  road Dolce and Gabbana streams their runway show live on the Internet.

 road Ryan Reynolds: 200 pounds and 8% body fat.

 road Psychiatrist who offers "therapy" sessions for those with "unwanted same-sex attractions" and who was recently hired by Hong Kong's Social Social Welfare department defends himself: “We should not ban people from therapy if they want to change. We should respect their right."

 road Matthew Rettenmund on how well things sold at the Debbie Reynold Hollywood auction. Marilyn Monroe's dress set a new record, selling for a whopping $5.6 million.

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 road Watch: New music video from RuPaul's Drag Race Winner Raja.

 road The AP brands Governor Cuomo as the new face of marriage equality.

Chile  road Ash from Chile's Puyehue volcano is currently painting sunsets all over the world.

 road Google celebrates Pride in June.

 road Gay rights leaders from Barcelona claim unwarranted treatment at Tel Aviv airport: "David Marti, the general manager for gay pride events in Barcelona, told Haaretz that airport security had stripped his boyfriend whom he was traveling with. The pair were asked a series of personal questions, which Marti said exceeded reasonable limits. The men's personal items were also thoroughly searched. Marti said the pair was questioned for a long time, with their security check ending just minutes before their plane took off."

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News: Alexander Skarsgard, Scotland, Anthony Weiner, Chile

 road Watch: The trailer for the US version of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.

Alex  road Alexander Skarsgard smolders on the cover Interview magazine.

 road A sizable number of members of The Chuch of Scotland are withholding donations due to the decision by the church to allow gay ministers: "An internal report by Glasgow Presbytery described how in one church – St George’s Tron in Glasgow – the 'general disquiet and sadness about the Church of Scotland’s decision to set up a special commission on this matter had been a contributory factor in several members directing their sacrificial giving and tithing towards the congregation’s evangelical ministry and outreach, rather than the central funds of the Church of Scotland.'"

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Chiel  road Chilean President Sebastian Pinera is pushing for civil unions in his country: "Mr. Pinera told Santiago-based El Mercurio newspaper he wanted to safeguard 'the dignity of those couples, whether of the opposite or even the same sex.'"

 road RIP gay actor and model Maurice Murrell who has just passed away at the age of 32.

 road Thousands of Serbs rally in support of recently apprehended war-crimes suspect Ratko Mladic.

 road The space shuttle Endeavor crew disembark from the International Space Station.

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News: Tom DeLay, Public Option, UFOs, Madonna, Provincetown

RoadObama administration to drop "public option" on health care: "Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said that government alternative to private health insurance is 'not the essential element' of the administration's health care overhaul. The White House would be open to co-ops, she said, a sign that Democrats want a compromise so they can declare a victory." Re-branding?

Coltonhaynes RoadActor Colton Haynes to play 17-year-old a-hole in Look.

RoadFormer House Majority leader Tom DeLay to join new season of Dancing with the Stars. Full cast here.

RoadMumbai celebrates Gay Pride following Indian ruling decriminalizing gay sex.

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Anchorage RoadAnchorage mayor to decide fate of anti-discrimination ordinance...

RoadTransgender woman sexually assaulted, beaten, in Trinidad, Colorado: "According to the police report obtained by the Chieftain, the attacker saw the woman in the lobby of the hotel and followed her back to her room. She did not let him in, but he later returned and forced his way in, sexually assaulted her, then tried to drown her in the bathtub and electrocute her by dropping a hair dryer into the bathtub. The victim reported that the attacker used anti-gay slurs as he attacked her."

RoadGay Boston news anchor Randy Price to lead Provincetown Carnival parade.

Marilynmonroe RoadBe Marilyn Monroe's dead neighbor.

RoadMale model fix: Gabriel Zadok Everett.

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RoadJezebel editor blames gay men for fashion industry woes: "I think that gay men are actually the most to blame for many of the problems in the fashion industry, like the absence of womanly curves on the runway, and the hideous, figure-assaulting trend that is the tent dress, which no women who have tits, and no straight men who have an appreciation for tits, have any use for."

RoadBroward County Deputee, who targeted Hispanic men in order to sexually abuse them, had a history of complaints which were ignored.


News: Elizabeth Taylor, Old Trees, Heatherette, 'Ex-Gay' Protests

road.jpg Protest as hundreds gather in Mountain View, California to 'pray the gay away': " A traveling national conference billed as an event 'to provide help for those struggling - and those whose loved ones struggle - with unwanted same-sex attractions,' drew about 700 people to a Mountain View church on Saturday. The gathering at the evangelical Christian church, Abundant Life Christian Fellowship, also drew a small protest by members of the Bay Area's gay and lesbian community incensed by the conference topic, the longstanding controversy on whether gays can be 'converted' - or turned into so-called 'ex-gays' through a Christian 'step out' program."

Ashtonroad.jpg Details beats up Ashton Kutcher.

road.jpg Marilyn Monroe sex tape unearthed, sold for $1.5 million.

road.jpg Hundreds protest marriage equality in Norway: "The protesters included immigrants and native Norwegians, and they came from the villages and the cities. All were firmly against marriage rights for gay and lesbian couples."

road.jpg Royal blackmailers Ian Strachan and Sean McGuigan head to court to face charges.

road.jpg Search on for Hollywood actor to play first man on the Moon, Neil Armstrong.

road.jpg Gay fashion duo Heatherette out of business. "The demise of Heatherette has been months in the making. The label actually canceled their fashion week show in February, though founder Traver Rains claimed at the time that he and partner Richie Rich were simply reorganizing the company and would be back in time for next fashion week. The reorganization was supposed to involve finding a new financial backer after Rich and Rains burned through the $6 million given to them by the Weisfeld Group, owner of urban streetwear outfit FUBU; a source tells Radar that the duo's efforts were unsuccessful, and that Rains and Travers have now amicably parted ways."

road.jpg Have scientists found the oldest living trees?

Chapsiiroad.jpg With opening of Chaps II, leather scene returning to San Francisco's SoMA district: "On Friday, David Morgan threw open the doors to Chaps II, the most recent indication that leather is making a comeback in SoMa. 'There's a resurgence happening,' said Morgan, 39. 'A lot of people have been saying the leather scene was dead, but there just wasn't a place for people to meet up. ... Gearing up in leather and going to a bar where you're the only one dressed is kind of like a woman going to a bar in a ball gown while everyone else is in T-shirts.' Chaps II, at 1225 Folsom St., is named for Chaps, a bar that operated from 1983-85 on 11th Street, where the DNA Lounge is now located. Appropriately enough, Chaps II hosted a meet-and-greet to open the 30th anniversary Mr. San Francisco Leather contest, which concluded Sunday. Next year, one of the contest's events might take place at another leather bar, Hole in the Wall, which Morgan says plans to reopen soon."

Hstendroad.jpg Suicidal Tendencies or homosexual ones?

road.jpg Orlando Bloom loves New York.

road.jpg Elizabeth Taylor recently O.D.ed on prescription drugs and booze.

road.jpg Lesbian couple told to "act straight" in UK pub: “We were told to make our sexuality less obvious. The landlord said there were complaints that the pub had too many dykes.”

road.jpg POLL: Parents find men kissing more offensive than severed heads in video games.

road.jpg Gay man arrested for using gay slur towards a police officer: "A gay man has been accused of homophobic breach of the peace - for allegedly calling an ex-police officer a p**f. Marc Sneddon, 38, clashed with former detective Stephen Whelehan while walking their dogs. He was charged and his partner Graham Spence - a police IT worker - was later arrested over claims he also shouted homophobic abuse on another occasion. The couple deny the claims and say neighbour Whelehan and his parents, James and Bridget, launched a vendetta of malicious complaints about them. Graham, 40, said: 'His dog attacked ours. Marc asked him to put it on a lead and got a torrent of abuse. Whelehan started calling him a 'wee f*****g p*****r'. Marc was provoked and asked whether he had a problem with his sexuality and did his wife know he was in the closet. Marc reported it to police but we were stunned when HE was charged."


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