High Heels Review

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A girl's mother returns after 15 years to find her daughter has married one of her (the mother's) old boyfriends


High Heels starts off in camp fashion with a title sequence straight out of the mid-60s Monty Berman school, promising lots more japes in Swinging Madrid.

Instead, however, we get a mother-daughter murder melodrama even more farfetched than the Joan Crawford classic, Mildred Pierce, on which this would appear to be loosely based.

Almodovar, in his double role of writer-director, intensifies this clash of styles and audience preconceptions by locating a just-about naturalistic dissection of family tensions within a milieu which Joe Orton would relish, all lawmen in drag, transvestite bars, and lots of singing.

That the film works at all — and an unqualified triumph it ain't — is down mostly to his star Victoria Abril, who, with total plausibility, handles all the seemingly impossible curve-balls her director throws her way, including one outlandish yet weirdly