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Oscars Check-in: Is ‘Parallel Mothers’ Too Artsy or a Profound Highlight of 2021?

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> Oscars Check-in: Is ‘Parallel Mothers’ Too Artsy or a Profound Highlight of 2021?

Netting two Academy Awards nominations for Original Score and Best Actress (Penélope Cruz), prospective viewers might wonder why Pedro Almodóvar's new movie Parallel Mothers did not also show up under the Best International Feature Film category. Have no fear: this Spanish-language feature is more than just a vehicle for Cruz, vividly telling intertwining stories of women connected by shared pasts, present, and futures.

What is ‘Parallel Mothers’ About?

Setting itself up as a story addressing the horrors of the Spanish Civil War, Parallel Mothers quickly shifts to the lives of two women who begin a friendship after giving birth on the same day. While tackling the responsibilities of motherhood from their otherwise disparate positions in life, these two characters, played by Penélope Cruz and Milena Smit, form a special bond that only they could understand.

Review of ‘Parallel Mothers’

Film auteur Pedro Almodóvar, known for his Oscar-winning dramas All About My Mother (1999) and Talk to Her (2002), may direct his new screenplay stripped-down, but Parallel Mothers still stands out as a career highlight. By covering new subjects with themes familiar to his work, Almodóvar finds a simultaneously distinct and universal symbolism within his characters, brought together and made better through their collective and original experiences. Driven by his signature vision, Almodóvar also knows when to let Penélope Cruz eat up the screentime with her acting range.

How Can I Watch ‘Parallel Mothers?’

Right now, Parallel Mothers is primarily in theaters, though it looks like you can rent it for $20 on Spectrum On Demand. As one of the best films of 2021, Parallel Mothers is a must-see.

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