Writer-director Pedro Almodovar’s latest is one of his more quiet, introspective films. It also has the characteristically good looks and great performances his movies often have.
Julieta (Emma Suarez) appears ready to move with her boyfriend (Dario Grandinetti) and start a new life in a new land. A chance meeting with an old friend (Michelle Jenner) changes her mind. She leaves her relationship, takes up her old apartment in Madrid, and starts penning letters to her long lost daughter.
The film then switches to flashback mode where a younger Julieta (Adriana Ugarte) meets her daughter’s father on a train, and they embark on a complicated life together. That flashback eventually leads to the present and an ending that might frustrate a high percentage of its viewers.
Suarez and especially Ugarte are good here, keeping the movie from being too melodramatic with finessed performances. This one isn’t as original or captivating as past Almodovar works, and it’s certainly lacking in humor.
Still, it holds you for its running time, and the actresses are very impressive.