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McCoy on Movies: The Skin I Live In Movie Review

McCoy on Movies: The Skin I Live In Movie Review
You might not look at plastic surgery in the same way again after taking a gander at Antonio Banderas' latest flick,
The Skin I Live In. Want to know why? Click here to find out!

 

 

"If you don't like my work, you can always call up Dr. 90210." Gifted plastic surgeon Robert Ledgard (Antonio Banderas) prepares to alter the looks - and life - of Vera (Elena Anaya) in a scene from Pedro Almodóvar's new foreign-language drama THE SKIN I LIVE IN.
  Credit: Lucía Faraig/© El Deseo, Courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics

 


KEY CAST MEMBERS:
Antonio Banderas, Elena Anaya, Marisa Paredes, Jan Cornet, Roberto Álamo, Eduard Fernández, Blanca Suárez, Susi Sánchez and Bárbara Lennie
WRITER(S):
Pedro Almodóvar, with the collaboration of Agustín Almodóvar and based on Mygale and Thierry Jonquet, Éditions Gallimard
DIRECTOR:
Pedro Almodóvar
WEB SITE:
http://www.sonyclassics.com/theskinilivein/
THE PLOT:
A film which, save for Melanie Griffith, may forever alter the way you look (no pun intended) at him, Antonio Banderas stars in The Skin I Live In as Robert Ledgard, a gifted plastic surgeon. Losing his wife following a fiery car crash - in which her companion, Zeca (Roberto Álamo), escaped - a dozen years ago, Robert has been working on a new form of skin sensitive to touch but tough enough to shield against diseases like malaria. With his wife gone and daughter Norma (Blanca Suárez) suffering her own unique form of pain, Robert is a very driven man.

 

Using cellular therapy, the procedure is highly untested, until Robert finds a perfect test subject. I would tell you more, but doing so would reveal way more than you may be prepared to know before heading to the theater.

 

THE TAKE: The Skin I Live In is very well-acted, very well-directed, very well-written. So why, then, am I struggling to tell you whether you should see the movie? Because the story is filled with twists - the biggest one of which will likely make the average guy think, "WOW! I didn't see that coming!"

 

There's a reason the film is called The Skin I Live In, for it's not just intriguing, it's very revealing (once you've seen the movie) as to what the story is about.

 

Let me put this way: Imagine Saw minus the gore and demented killer with the intellect of a film like Seven and a twist on a Splice/Crying Game-like level. I mean, The Skin I Live In is just one of those films where (for the audience in terms of a watching standpoint) it's all about the reveal. And how you feel about that reveal will likely be the deciding factor in regards to how much you enjoy the film.

 

The film, in terms of both the way it's told and performed, is done very, very well, but the shock factor that hits with the first of its reveals is what you're going to take away from it. Banderas is excellent at selling the motivations behind all of his character's actions, even as they venture into territory from which there is no coming back.

 

This is the type of film for which the word "good" is arbitrary; the words "memorable," "weird," "twisted," "unexpected" and "different," however, are not. Sure, there may be a story of survival in there somewhere, but given the events that transpire in the film - you really have to see it to understand! - you'll be too much in shock to focus on it.

 

PARTING SHOT: The Skin I Live In will stay with you long after you leave the theater, and it possibly will make you jump out of your own skin.

 

RATING (OUT OF FOUR BUCKETS OF POPCORN):

Tabari McCoy -

Tabari McCoy is Cincy Chic's movie critic. You can check out more of his work on his blog at McCoyonMovies.BlogSpot.com and follow him on Twitter at @tabarimccoy

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