© Piffl Media GmbH

Spain 2005

Opening 4 Jan 2007

Directed by: Fernando León de Aranoa
Writing credits: Fernando León de Aranoa
Principal actors: Candela Peña, Micalela Nevárez, Mariana Cordero, Llum Barrera, Violeta Pérez

Even the world of prostitution offers opportunities for friendship and solidarity between women to flourish. This drama portrays Caye (Candela Pena) as a prostitute who lives a double life in the presence of her middle-class family with whom she lunches on Sundays. Her mother, Pilar (Mariana Cordero), still lives with the fantasy that her husband, who died three years before, may still be alive. This fantasy world is repeated when Caye meets Manuel (Luis Callejo), a computer specialist, who just laughs when she tells him that she works as a whore.  In her building, Caye befriends Zulema (Micaela Nevarez), a Dominican who has come to Madrid in order to earn a living to send money back home to her son and mother. Through daily activities such as shopping and hair styling, they share their dreams and hopes and bond in friendship. One night, they go out on the town and decide to be princesses instead of hookers. However, there is also the harsh reality of their profession. Zulema, illegal, has fallen prey to a corrupt government official who entices her to give free “services” in exchange for papers that will give her legal status but maintains her hanging on the edge of hope. She learns that when she does not give in, he becomes physically abusive. Even though Caye warns her to get out of this relationship, Zulema is caught and pays the price.  Director Fernando Leon de Aranoa uses scenes to convey information without the need of words. Through merely watching, we are able to understand what transpires although there is nothing that is really new. This is particularly so when Zulema learns of her condition at the hospital and decides to get even. Both leading female actresses have won Goya awards for their performances and the musical score by Manu Chao is befitting for the movie. Zulema's decision to return to her son brings her back home. In a heartening act of generosity and compassion, Caye gives her the money she has been saving for her breast implants. Some dreams are more urgent than others. (Coppelia Hays Branscheid)

The theaters below show films in their original language; click on the links for showtimes and ticket information.
Interviews with the stars, general film articles, and reports on press conferences and film festivals.
Subscribe to the free KinoCritics monthly email newsletter here.