I’m So Excited!
Directed by Pedro Almodovar
Cornerhouse, 4 May 2013
Almodovar’s flighty, sporadically delightful comedy alludes to but is not subsumed by Spain’s precarious economic situation.
The conceit is as neat as Neurath’s, granted: Spain is a plane in mid-air, uncertain where or how to land. When the plane to Mexico runs into trouble it circles up ahead, and the pilots must engineer a crash landing if the passengers are to survive. Meanwhile they alternately fret and frolic to forget.
Those accustomed to Almodovar’s cinematic sorcery are likely to find this film disappointing, even though the ingredients seem to be all there. The problem is that there’s neither a sense of jeopardy nor a satiric bite to any of it. A film is not a tableau: stuff must happen, it must go somewhere. Be transformative, even if in a small way. There’s simply not enough emotional turbulence here.
What would Montesquieu do? That’s always a question worth asking. European economies are going to the wall and all Almodovar has to offer is a fizzy performance of an old Pointer Sisters’ song. Gwen Guthrie’s Ain’t Nothin’ Goin’ on but the Rent might have been a better choice.