Four films by acclaimed Spanish director Pedro Almodóvar.
In the supernatural-themed 'Volver' (2006), Penélope Cruz plays a Madrid mother and housewife of a drunk husband. She and her hairdressing sister are orphans and when their sole surviving relative there - their mum's sister - passes on, her past habit of talking to the girls' mother as if she were still alive takes on a new and chilling significance.
In 'Talk To Her' (2002), Benigno (Javier Cámara) is a housebound nurse who falls in love with a young dancer, Alicia (Leonor Watling), he sees rehearsing through his window. Marco (Darío Grandinetti) is a journalist who falls in love with a bullfighter, Lydia (Rosario Flores), after being assigned to interview her. When Alicia and Lydia are involved in separate accidents which send them both into a comas, Benigno and Marco meet at the hospital and unpredictable consequences promptly ensue.
In 'All About My Mother' (1999) single mother Manuela (Cecilia Roth) takes her seventeen-year-old son, Esteban (Eloy Azorín), to see a stage performance of 'A Streetcar Named Desire' as a birthday treat. Tragically, Esteban is killed when he chases after a taxi carrying his favourite actress, Huma Rojo (Marisa Paredes). Consumed with guilt, Manuela decides to go in search of Esteban's father, whose identity she never revealed to her son. She finds out that he has had a sex change and is now called Lola the Pioneer, and along the way meets various characters, who help her with a painful journey of self-discovery.
'Bad Education' (2004) is a semi-autobiographical melodrama that follows the intertwining stories of two boys, Enrique (Fele Martínez) and Ignacio (Gael Garcia Bernal), who fall in love at an abusive Catholic school and are parted by a jealous paedophile priest. 16 years later, Enrique, now a successful filmmaker, is casting about for an idea for a new film when a young cross-dressing actor, claiming to be Ignacio but known as 'Angel', approaches him with a short story based on their schooldays together. Enrique decides to use the story, and casts Angel in the film's lead role, despite his discovery that Angel is not in fact Ignacio, who died three years earlier, but his younger brother. Enrique's film also includes scenes in which the grown-up Ignacio tracks down the Catholic priest who abused them as boys, and these scenes soon become mirrored by real-life events.