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The acclaimed and adored Pedro Almodóvar reunites with actors Antonio Banderas – who won the Cannes Best Actor prize – and Penélope Cruz in a vibrant, provocative and nostalgic homage to an endlessly fascinating topic: himself.
Filmmaker Salvador Mallo is a fading auteur, halfway through his 60s, increasingly incapacitated and unsure if there’s anything he still wants to say. When Salvador discovers that one of his earliest films is being reappraised and re-released, he reunites with estranged star Alberto, to whom he hasn’t talked in more than 30 years. As they did once before, the two men bring out the best and worst in each other, prompting Salvador to reflect on his childhood, sexuality and relationship to friends, family and lovers.
Intensely self-reflexive and autobiographic, PAIN & GLORY is yet another dazzling showcase from the undisputed master of Spanish cinema. Powered by a cast of Almodóvar favourites and delivered with his trademark humour, passion and sheer cinematographic elán, it could be the most honest and perceptive film yet from a director who’s never been afraid to wear his heart on his sleeve.
Reaches a level of perfection that is difficult to surpass. Five stars – El Mundo
Pain and Glory is at once the gentlest and most emotionally naked movie Pedro Almodóvar has ever made. - New York Magazine