“Broken Embraces” more interesting and terrific as it goes along

Spanish team of Almodovar and Cruz weave a romantic mystery tale

| Feb 4, 2010


Penelope Cruz in a scene from Broken Embraces
Broken Embraces stars Penelope Cruz in her fourth film with writer-director Pedro Almodovar, and it is a very good romantic mystery that will keep you interested and trying to guess its secrets up until the very end.

The time shifts between 2008 and the early 1990s in Madrid, and the story involves the relationships of a beautiful, sexy woman, an old wealthy businessman, and a young, handsome filmmaker and how their lives became intertwined.

hotshots-logoWe first meet Harry Caine, who is blind and who writes movie scripts. A young woman he has just met is reading the newspaper to him in his apartment, and she reads the notice of the recent death of Ernesto Martel, a famous businessman who had spent some time in prison.

After she has finished reading to him, Harry asks her to describe herself for him, uses his hands to confirm her description, and the next thing we know, they are making love on the couch.

When the young woman is in the bathroom, an older woman named Judit Garcia lets herself into the apartment, and after the young woman has left, Judit confronts Harry about his indiscretion.

Harry says, “All that’s left is for me to enjoy life.”

Judit has a son named Diego, who also helps Harry, even to the point of their trying to write a movie script together. Then when Judit goes away from Madrid for two weeks and Diego has an accident that sends him to the hospital, Harry starts telling Diego the story of the love of his life, Lena, which we see as the details unfold.

It was back in 1994 when Harry met Lena and Ernesto. Harry’s name was Mateo Blanco back then, and he was a movie director. But most important, he wasn’t blind.

Lena was Ernesto’s mistress, she wanted to act in the movies, and she showed up to audition for Mateo’s next movie, Girls and Suitcases.

However, Ernesto was extremely jealous of Lena, and so he sent his awkward son to follow Lena wherever she went and film her under the pretext of making a documentary.

You can guess what happened next. Lena got the part, she and Mateo fell in love during the making of the movie, but then what happened?

Broken Embraces gets more interesting and terrific as it goes along.

I’m Dan Culberson and this is “Hotshots.”