The career of internationally renowned Spanish filmmaker Pedro Almodóvar is being celebrated with Australia's first complete retrospective of his films at the Gallery of Modern Art
cinemas from July 21 to September 2, 2012.
Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art Director Tony Ellwood said tickets were on sale now for the program, presented by QAGOMA's Australian Cinémathèque to coincide with the major exhibition 'Portrait of Spain: Masterpieces from the Prado' at QAG.
'While the exhibition at QAG illuminates the history of Spain from the sixteenth to nineteenth centuries through painting, Pedro Almodóvar's contemporary view of the country is an idiosyncratic one,' Mr Ellwood said.
'Featuring all 18 of his feature films, this represents the most complete retrospective of the writer-director's work ever shown in Australia.
'For more than 30 years, Almodóvar has written and directed films with a unique blend of melodrama, suspense, black humour and visceral emotion, films that often deal with excess, passion and the complexity of family and identity.'
QAGOMA Australian Cinémathèque Curator José Da Silva said Almodóvar's films contained some of the most memorable stories and characters in international cinema.
'After a provincial upbringing, Almodóvar began his career in the mid-1970s during the period of Spain's transition to democracy, amid Madrid's countercultural movement known as La Movida,' Mr Da Silva said.
'His provocative early films, and his involvement with punk music and publishing, helped to mark his work with a sense of personal and social liberation, which carried him on to international acclaim.'
The program includes Almodóvar's first feature, Pepi, Luci, Bom and Other Girls Like Mom 1980, which was adapted from a photo-novella the director published in an underground Madrid zine. It explores female resilience and solidarity, themes that would reappear throughout his career.
Among the award winning films screening in the retrospective are his breakthrough international works What Have I Done to Deserve This? 1984 and Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown 1988.
Almodóvar went on to attract even wider recognition, and notoriety, for Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down! 1990, starring Antonio Banderas, and Kika 1993, with Victoria Abril.
His close working relationship with another actress, Penélope Cruz, would begin with Live Flesh 1997 and continue with All About My Mother 1999 and the highly regarded Volver 2006.
In 2011, he reunited with Banderas for The Skin I Live In, which incorporated elements of horror into his usual milieu of flamboyant melodrama.
Among dozens of other international film awards and nominations, Pedro Almodóvar has won ten Spanish Goya Awards, two Academy Awards, a Golden Globe and three awards from the Cannes International Film Festival,