The Skin I Live In review

Spanish film legend Pedro Almodóvar teleports Greek tragedy in to 2012 with a mad dermatologist and his mysterious imprisoned patient. Who’s got really, really fantabulous skin. It’s actually impossible to sum up the film without giving away its secrets. Mystery is key - the tale slowly unravels as jigsaw pieces fall in to place and a pile of apparently random crap gradually forms a lucid picture. It’s fascinating and, ultimately, thankfully, satisfying.

There’s nothing subtle about the design, from gaudy, hard-lit modernist sets to brazen brain-drilling music and it’s bordering on the astoundingly silly, from a manic brute in a tiger costume through to the central science-ignorant concept itself. Somehow, though, as that tangle untangles, all of these jarring aspects become less important and, in fact, contribute to a unique, twisted work of art.

Giggleless bonkersness, this is top drawer, memorable stuff, as it turns out.

4 out of 5

1st Sep 2011 | Official site | On IMDb

Comments

*WARNING! Here be spoilers*

The latest Almodovar offering really is something quite special: a sinister, riveting, intelligent, thought provoking fascination - tale portrayal dramatic creation, murder, betrayal, meshed multi-level. It's merciless, brutal, ruthless; with crucial element transgenics and forced-transgender fusion.

A cosmetic-surgeon is no qualms protagonist, stopping at nothing to manufacture, recreate, replace loved lost one - an unscrupulous obsession driven by quilt & revenge superbly acted by Antonio Banderas.

Gender realignment appears theme reoccurrence for the Director - issue which clearly inspires him.

The Skin I live In's seed idea germinates from Greek Myth Pygmalion / Shakespeare The Winter's Tale, albeit variation-on-theme hybrid modern mutant clone. Clever how story resolve left me pondering will the sex-changed victim end up with the lesbian, he come she, always fancied.

I give it ***** definite go see.

David C, 1st Sep 2011