"The Skin I Live In" (dir. Pedro Almodóvar, 2011, Spain), introduction and Q&A with Dr. Arturo Marquez-Gomez

Tuesday, Apr, 19 2016 — 7:30 PM

The Skin I Live In poster

The Mellon Globalization Forum invites all to the seventh screening in its About the Body: A World Film Series titled The Skin I Live In (dir. Pedro Almodóvar, 2011, Spain), introduction and Q&A with Dr. Arturo Marquez-Gomez.

"There are several genres nimbly folded into “The Skin I Live In,” which might also be described as an existential mystery, a melodramatic thriller, a medical horror film or just a polymorphous extravaganza. In other words, it’s an Almodóvar movie with all the attendant gifts that implies: lapidary technique, calculated perversity, intelligent wit. There’s also beauty and spectacle, of course, especially as embodied by Vera, who usually wears a body stocking with gloves and booties, and knows exactly what she looks like. Watch how she watches Ledgard watching her, a relay of looks that evokes John Berger’s observation: “Men look at women. Women watch themselves being looked at.” Were we born this way or made? Mr. Almodóvar has his ideas, which he playfully explores with each labyrinthine turn.

The story is impossible — and weird, dark, funny and fractured, even jagged. It opens on a cityscape and the dateline “Toledo 2012” (as in Spain, not Ohio), the first indication that we’re not in Kansas anymore. It’s a shivery intimation of a futureworld, but it’s followed by a nod to “Citizen Kane” as the camera glides past a gate and into an isolated mansion. There Vera lives in a bright, locked room with a Spartan-modernist ambience, where she does little else except watch nature TV, practice yoga, scribble on the walls and create little busts inspired by the biomorphic forms of Louise Bourgeois. Ledgard calls her his patient, though she would rightly call herself his prisoner, as well as the object of his obsession." Excerpted from Manohla Dargis's review in The New York Times, October 13, 2011


The World Film Series is sponsored by the Mellon Globalization Forum and the SUT in conjunction with the conference “Why All the Fuss about the Body?”: Local and Global/ized Bodies (April 11-16, 2016). Free and open to the public.

  • Monday, April 25, Son of Saul (dir. László Nemes, 2015, Hungary), introduction and Q&A with Dr. Justyna Beinek

Back to listing