Live Flesh 1997. 103 minutes. Spain. Directed by Pedro Almodóvar. Watchdate: 5/22/2011.
Shall we gasp at the lively energy of this uninhibited soap opera that brings only graceful honor and boundless imagination to a once scorned storytelling form? Javier Bardem accomplishes wonderful acts in the fields of wheelchair basketball and cunnilingus, playing against type as a nerdy paraplegic. A storm of jealous misbehavior swirls around him, alternately uproarious and moving, engulfing his seemingly untouchable goodness as Almodóvar upsets expectations with ease and memorably weaving emotional conjuring. The puzzle snaps into place just before we are ready to say goodbye.