Rated NR

This Spanish film by writer-director Julio Medem (Lovers of the Arctic Circle) proves that one person’s incoherence is another person’s meaningful art. Paz Vega, clearly intended to be the next Penélope Cruz, plays Lucía, a Madrid waitress who retreats to an island beach after the apparent death of her novelist boyfriend Lorenzo (Tristán Ulloa). From there unfolds a labyrinthine series of flashbacks and, possibly, fantasy sequences that reveals the complicated nature of the couple’s relationship, as well as Lorenzo’s encounters with other women. The sex is frequent and boisterous, with no lack of nudity male and female. But Medem’s affection for earthy, physical love is overshadowed by a portentous puzzle of a plot. A significant twist is meant to make viewers re-evaluate all they have assumed about the story. Depending on your sympathy for such devices, you’ll find it emotionally resonant or a cheap trick.


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