So, un film de Almodovar, yet again starring Penelope Cruz. What's not to like?
Hmm... well, for once this is all a bit meh, to be honest. Cruz is very good, don't get me wrong, and the film is very nice to look at, but it's all a bit staid, and left me with an overall feeling of "hang on, is that it?" The whole plot is a bit sub-standard soap opera fare, but that doesn't have to be a problem - in the past Pedro has run with some pretty OTT plotlines, but directed with such vim and vigour that you end up with something not unlike Coronato Streeto, but on acid. Dare I say that Alomodovar is getting a bit old, or bored?
-although of course it is always nice to pick up the odd Spanish phrase here and there, so I shan't complain too much. But in my search to find foreign language films to recommend to older students, I'm afraid that this one's a nada. (Call it a minor mission, or obsession of mine - to persuade a 6th year pupil that they can cope with reading the wee words at the bottom of the screen, and will emerge the richer for having been immersed in the joys of another culture. Mind you, maybe I should just tell the boys that Penelope Cruz gets 'em out...)
How is la Mathematica?
Well, obviously there's less maths going on than in my other recent Spanish effort, Fermat's Room. But it's interesting to note that this is yet another film (a la Time Traveler's Wife) full of wibbly-wobbly, timey-wimey backwards-and forwardsness, as we nip back and forth through time to unravel the secret of the main character's doomed love-affair with PC. So I guess you could play with negative numbers yet again... or maybe you could pose the question, which year should we take as the starting point (or Origin, if you will), for the movie? If we take the earliest event as x=0, then we won't need to worry about negative numbers at all - the benefit of a change of axes, or rather axis, what with time being one-dimensional. At least I think it is.