"Spain has a bad relationship with its past. "The Spanish people do not want to know about the darkest parts of history." These are the words of Pedro Almodvar during his last visit to Los Angeles. The following is an excerpt from a Los Angeles Times interview with Spanish filmmaker Pedro Almodvar and Spanish actor Penelope Cruz on the pretext of their latest collaboration, "parallel Mothers." Passionate and often erotic, he is world-famous, violating traditional gender and ideological conventions one after another in his films, albeit without a clear political statement, especially not about Franco's dictatorship in Spain in his early years. But that decision, not to address it at the beginning of Almodvar's career, was deliberate, and in his latest film, Parallel Mothers, he explicitly pays tribute to the thousands of victims of Spain's civil war of the late 1930s and the rise of a bloodthirsty dictatorship until 1975. .
Oscar-winner Penelope Cruz, Almodvar's long-time inspiration for "parallel Mothers," plays Janice, a photographer who befriends Anna (Melina Smith's new face in cinema) during a hospital delivery. Janice, on the other hand, is trying to exhume a mass grave in her native village because of her personal emotional conflict, which is a terrible result of the armed conflict in Spain.
Almodvar recalls that during the dictatorship and for years. The following year, the Spanish people buried their memories of those crimes, fearing that their lives would be in danger if they said anything.
"My father went to war when I was eighteen," he said. He was not a Republican, but he was taken to war anyway. He never spoke at home about war. "Most of the families had a morbid fear that [if they said anything] they might endanger their children or grandchildren." One of his grandfathers' father fell and now, like the others, they do not dare to take his foot.
"There are many secrets about this in many families," he says. There are many people who still do not know what happened then. "If you ask your grandmother about your grandfather or father seriously and he says he does not know what happened, you can no longer insist on giving him more information, because it is very sensitive and painful."
Spanish cinema is no exception. , Generally do not want to deal with that dark period. Among the few films that have dealt with this period, Almodvar considers Victor Erise's "The Spirit of the Beehive" (1973) and "El Sur" (1983) to be the most notable to date.>
But now that Spain seems to want to debate the truth, "parallel mothers" have entered the debate. Since the film's release, Almodvar has received numerous letters from surviving family members asking if some of the issues raised in the film (such as the man buried with a glass eye) were inspired by their cherished final moments. Is or not. And indeed it can be, because all the details in the film about the missing come from official sources.
Penelope Cruz as Janice and Melina Smith as Anna in" Parallel Mothers ".
Early last year, the Spanish Socialist Party Introduced "democratic memory" and finally allocated organizational support and financial resources to dig up the remains of unmarked bodies in unmarked graves across the country, as well as to find and identify remnants that are in relatively good condition.
Prior to this fundamental move, some anthropologists volunteered for sporadic excavations, the same thing that Janice does in "parallel Mothers." Refreshes. But I've talked to a lot of families about it, and all they want is for a place where their loved one's name is, and they just go and lay flowers for them. "It's a basic thing that all human beings have a right to have." Recount the values of Franco's Spain.
Almodvar first proposed the idea of "parallel mothers" to Cruz nearly twenty years ago; It took us three months to reach the quasi-global quarantine of 2020, which lasted three months in Spain. It was during this time that she returned to the screenplay for "parallel Mothers." During that fruitful period of solitude, he completed the story and quickly began filming. In order to make sense of the characters not wearing masks in the film, Almodvar decided to consider the end of the story in 2019.
" Parallel Mothers "The eighth collaboration between Pedro Almodvar and Penelope Cruz, of which Cruz starred in seven films.
" Parallel Mothers " This is the seventh collaboration between Almodvar and Cruz (including the eighth role in the comedy "I'm So Excited"), in all but one of which Cruz has played the role of a troubled mother. "Penelope blindly believes in me," says Almodvar. "He believes in me even more than I do." Almodvar realized from the moment he saw Cruz in his first film "Jamn Jamn" that he was an unusual actor, and on the other hand, Cruz immediately after watching "Close Me!" (Tie Me Up, Tie Me Down) Almodvar knew as a teenager that he wanted to enter the performing arts. When Almodvar gave him a memorable eight-minute role in "Live Flesh," he achieved his long-held dream of working with the filmmaker.
And Cruz was overjoyed when he received a call from his beloved filmmaker amid a vague pandemic situation. "Well, I'm really happy to hear he'm working on this script and we're going to work on it together," he says. And he's going through some of the toughest rehearsal sessions he's ever had in his filmmaking life (nearly three months), mostly to help his newcomer Smith.
Interpersonal interaction between Janice Cruz and Anna Smith It shows open families that have been a major part of Almodvar's work since The Law of Desire. But Janice is a product of Almodvar's respect for women who have fought hard for their freedom in the 21st century. " Given that all my characters are feminists. I gave all my female characters complete moral independence. "" She has written some of the most amazing female characters in the history of cinema, and that message of honor and equality is always in her films, "Cruz said. I played other women for Pedro who were also feminists in their own way. "Even the 'Volver' woman or Rosa's sister in 'All About My Mother' are very intellectual characters, maybe in different ways, but they are all fighting for the same thing." He believes that Janice's character had a different complexity for Cruz, as he had never experienced the pangs of conscience and shame that come from hiding a secret. "She always knows what she wants to say and what she wants to do," says the director of "parallel Mothers." There is always a contradiction in it. "
Cruz says of this character:" My relationship with my feelings is very different from that of Genesis, I express myself much more easily, I cry more easily. In that sense, I'm far from a router. "
Penelope Cruz "parallel mothers" won the Best Actress award in Venice, as well as the Los Angeles Film Critics Association. Regrets exactly what happened in America.
"The right wing has stolen our flag. Now, if someone in Spain's flag or hat or watch is our flag, everyone thinks that person has extreme right-wing views. "They have stolen our national symbols and equated them with their own ideologies." "Spanish is my birthplace," he says. And my hometown is all those Lamanche yards full of women who work and talk about everything that happens on our street. To me, that street is like what Gabo (Gabriel Garcia Marquez) wrote in "One Hundred Years of Solitude."
Source: latimesTags: pedro, almodوارvar, penelope, cruz, call, "parallel, mothers", return, patriotism