All About My Mother - A Humane Document

In the history of films there happen to be very few which are remembered even after long years. Have we or can ever blank out Roman Holiday or Gone With The Wind? All About My Mother, the award-winning film written and directed by Pedro Almodovar in 1999, is a unique kind of film that remains in our memory even after lone years. The film deals with the contentious and grave issues of AIDS, transvestitism, sexual identity, gender, religion, faith, existentialism and also many others. However, though the film has revolved around these issues, even for once has not been able to get out of the conventional touch of tragicomedy, a fine blend of serious issues and a dark humor.
What does All About My Mother then signify? To be very precise, All About My Mother deals with the story of Manuela, who happens to be a single mother in Madrid. The film commences on the eve of the seventeenth birthday of Manuela's son, Esteban. The presentation of the film All About Eve on the television fails to earn the attention of Esteban prompring him to write mother, titling it Todo sobre mi madre (All About My Mother). On the night of Esteban's birthday the mother and son decide to watch the ell known production of A Streetcar Named Desire. The show becoming marvallous prompts Esteban to ask the leading actress, Huma Rojo, for her autograph even in the rain. While they wait, Esteban remarks that Nina Cruz, the actress who played Stella, really touched Manuela. Manuela tells him that she once played Stella in an amateur production, and that his father played Kowalski. But however due to rain Huma Rojo fails to attend the boy and gets into the car. Being frustrated Esteban chases after her and gets hit and killed by an oncoming car. The bereaved mother, Manuela leaves Madrid for Barcelona in search of her husband, a transvestite junkie named Lola. However, her visit to Barcelona fails since she can't find Lola. Though she finds Agrado, a transvestite hooker, who happens to be an old friend from many years ago, who tells her that on one fine morning she found that Lola had cleaned out Agrado's apartment and disappeared. Being a kind hearted person Agrado agrees to find a job for Manuela and brings her to a young nun named Rosa Sanz, who is specialized in helping reformed hookers and junkies. Rosa also knows Lola whom once she helped with detox. Though Rosa tries to help her in all sorts but the destiny seems to go against the duo. In the meanwhile it becomes an open secret that Rosa is pregnant and complicating the situation Lola is the father of Rosa's baby. Although Manuela tells Rosa that she had a son who was killed, she does not tell her that Lola was the father.

The next part of the film proceeds in due course where the human miseries in the present world has been depicted in the best manner through the performance of each actor. The meeting of Manuela and Lola, Rosa being affected with AIDS, Rosa's baby being adopted by Manuela and given the name Esteban have made All About My Mother, one of the finest speicmens of human document. Almodòvar ends the film with this dedication: "To all actresses who have played actresses. To all women who act. To men who act and become women. To all the people who want to be mothers. To my mother."

All About My Mother hs been widely regarded as Almodóvar's finest and most mature film to date the finest glimpses of humane touch made the film to win the Academy Award in the year 1999 in the category of the Best Foreign language Film and seven Goya awards including Best Film, Best Director and Best Actress in a Leading Role for Argentinean actress Cecilia Roth. The overwhelming influence of the film led to theatrical stage adaptation of All About My Mother by the renowned playwright Samuel Adamsonmaking it the first Englishlanguage adaptation of Almodóvar's works, and having the personal support and approval of Pedro Almodóvar.
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