Like the trashiest of soap operas,Almodóvar's Women On The Verge Of A Nervous Breakdown knows an over-the-top plot needs outrageous characters to balance everything out . Not one character seems remotely real in this film--- but who cares? It's all about pathos and tragedy and romantic fatalism. Besides, who hasn't imagined dying or killing for love?
Drugged gazpacho, attempted suicides, terrorist plots and police inquires are the order of the day in this farcical romp of a film. The usual Almodovar neons and strong female characters are also apparent in one of the Spaniard’s lighter efforts but its frenetic, zany comedy is endlessly enjoyable and as ever is gorgeously shot.
It is so enjoyable that even the meanest characters come off as rather fun and entertaining. The credit goes to Almodovar for the great script and direction. He nails it as he presents this story, and even the minor characters have great development. Maura's performance is amazing. It's so over the top, but it is so Almodovar.
It could have turned into a lame soap opera but in the hands of Almodovar it's a colorful, energetic and funny piece of cinema.
I'm starting to see how foolish it was to try to get into Almodóvar by watching his latest films. His eighties films have so much more energy, and I can feel myself getting more serious about them because they don't take themselves so seriously. This one is a gem, fast, funny, and clever—and it makes a persuasive argument, in case any were needed, that men and women are both completely nuts.
Does Almodovar really shoot the same movie all the time? The same characters? The same topics? Yeah I know, he does. But this one is one of his best. Don't like his humor so much usually, but here he has made the best of it. Some bad acting, some stupid scenes, but it was fun.