nad 🔪’s review published on Letterboxd:
“Love is not enough to save the person you love.”
there’s a moment in this when Salvador looks at Federico and asks “your new family?” and it encompasses an entire lifetime of pain and lost love with such sweeping gravitas that i felt my own emotions instantly drowned out by it. a simple yet powerful scene that also cements this as Antonio Banderas’ best performance probably since La piel que habito. Almodóvar brings out mesmerizing work in his casts.
i couldn’t help but think of The Irishman dealing with these same themes of memory, ageing and solitude, and that i like Dolor y gloria better in almost every regard because it hits the nail on the head with exquisitely poignant notes that the former lacks for me. could’ve watched a 3h cut of this a lot more easily too. Almodóvar has a spontaneous but tender hold on Salvador’s story and infuses it with his own life experience.
one of my favorite endings of the year and i find myself not just rethinking large portions of the flashbacks because of it but also the entrancing use of color. artistic expression and depression go hand in hand in Salvador’s life, as much a curse as it is a blessing.