Full house again at the EON : 14 women, 4 men for Volver
A very dense and complex discussion difficult to convey due to the variety of themes summarised here.
Two women had seen the film before.
Two immediate comments were:
– It is only seeing the film for the second time that I appreciated its humour.
– A male viewer saw it as a ‘Greek Tragedy’ and wondered if retribution would follow. Others disagreed.
A question and answer from the floor:
Why is he female character so sexualised the film?
Almodovar initially shows the way women are traditionally perceived (and portrayed): cleaning, cooking, sexual objects, serving and meeting men’s needs. But he also shows the other side, women’s resourcefulness, their solidarity and strength, juxtaposing the two.
Very Colourful : lots of red . Focus on the knife as weapon, first seen during washing-up scene.
Main themes: Mothers protecting children, mother/daughter relationship, family secrets, skeletons in cupboard, incest/sexual abuse, death, superstition/reality. Some thought both murders were ‘crimes of passion’, wind that make people mad, extreme ridiculousness’.
Male characters secondary. History repeating itself – abuse, killing, down the generations.
Secondary themes: plight of immigrants, Russian emigrees, women’s poverty, private/public spheres, what kept in family ‘washing linen in private’ v disclosing personal stuff to all and sundry on reality television. Demented Aunt Paula’s home – orderly, baking produced, etc. clue that she not alone in the house!
Film generally very well-received and much enjoyed!