23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
This review is from: Women On The Verge Of A Nervous Breakdown  [VHS] (VHS Tape)In 'Women On The Verge Of A Nervous Breakdown', Pedro Almodovar subtley overturns traditional gender stereotypes. Outside of the shennanigans she encounters from place to place, Pepa takes stock of her situation in the taxi that carries her between buildings. Its here she recognizes that the mechanics of motorcycles are much easier to fathom than those of male psychology. Ivan's first wife Lucia, remains in the 60's fashion she was wearing when he left her. It's almost as if time stopped for her the moment he left. The array of colours seem to be used as a metaphor for the full and intense emotions of the women involved, compared to the grey and black of Carlos and Ivan.
Apparently Almodovar had to film the balcony scenes in a studio because the downtown skyline of Madrid is now just a sea of office and apartment buildings. Almodovar has never made any secret of the fact that a director should "never borrow, but steal if it is justified" from another director. Witness his homage to Hitchcock's 'Rear Window' when Pepa looks across the street into Lucia's apartment building.
It's ironic that in his native Spain, Pedro Almodovar finally broke free from being described as a 'cult' director to being appreciated by a wider audience with the massive success of this film. Meanwhile in the U.S., the film was specifically marketed by Orion as a 'minority' picture aimed at an Hispanic and female audience. They must have been pleasantly surprised when the audiences for this film crossed racial and gender barriers.