Vicente Aranda – Celos AKA Jealousy (1999)


A month before he’s to marry Carmen, Antonio finds a photograph of a man with his arm on her shoulder. The photograph triggers jealousy: he questions Carmen, Carman’s friend Cinta, and his friend Luis who introduced him to Carmen. Cinta tells Antonio the man’s first name. Carmen tells him that the man meant nothing to her, and that the photograph was taken before she met Antonio. She loves Antonio and sets out to wipe the photograph from his mind through exuberant sex, but her ploy backfires and Antonio remains fixated. Slowly he finds out about the man, and about Carmen’s past. Will jealousy consume this couple or can they find a way to kill the green-eyed monster? Continue reading

Vicente Aranda – Fata Morgana (1965)


“Gim is a beautiful fashion model whose life is in peril. There is a homicidal killer who seek to murder her only Gim is totally unaware of her danger. The only person who seems to be sure that the killer will strike is a professor at a local collage. A police detective also believes the killer will strike but knows not the killer nor the victim. Upon speaking to the professor he has the victims identity and must find her in the mostly deserted city populated by a small group of unusual people who attempt to thwart his search. Continue reading

Vicente Aranda – Amantes AKA Lovers (1991)


Plot Synopsis by Josh Ralske

Vicente Aranda’s Lovers is set in Spain, mostly in Madrid, during the 1950s. The story line is reminiscent of Theodore Dreiser’s classic An American Tragedy (which was filmed as A Place in the Sun), wherein a passive, amoral, and shallow protagonist inadvertently destroys the lives of two women who love him. The handsome Paco (Jorge Sanz, who also starred in Belle Epoque and has been called “the Spanish Tom Cruise”) is a young soldier involved with a virginal maid, Trini (Maribel Verdu of Y Tu Mama Tambien). Trini is saving her money and planning for their wedding, but Paco tells her not to worry, that he will find a job and save money for them. Paco leaves the army, but has trouble finding and keeping a steady job. He ends up renting a cheap room from Luisa (Spanish superstar Victoria Abril, best known for her work in Pedro Almodovar’s films), a beautiful and mysterious widow. Before long, Luisa has seduced the sexually frustrated Paco, and involved him in her moneymaking scams. Trini quickly figures out what is going on, and makes a desperate effort to win back Paco’s affection. Paco is obsessed with the sexually experienced and voracious older woman, but is unable to break off his long-term relationship with Trini. He attempts to string them both along, with disastrous results. The film was the first of veteran filmmaker Aranda to get a theatrical release in the United States, thanks largely to Abril’s star power, and caused a minor sensation with its sexual explicitness, in particular the infamous “handkerchief scene.” Continue reading