Sex and Lucia
Pillow talk. Lucia and Lorenzo are happy until the past collides with the future...
Lucía y el Sexo

dir-scr Julio Medem
with Paz Vega, Tristan Ulloa, Najwa Nimri, Daniel Freyre, Elena Anaya, Silvia Llanos, Javier Camara, Diana Suarez, Juan Fernandez, Arsenio Leon, Javier Coromina
release UK/US 10.May.02
01/Spain 2h08

4 out of 5 stars
R E V I E W   B Y   R I C H   C L I N E

sex and lucia Metaphysical Spanish filmmaker Medem is back with another gem (see also The Red Squirrel, Tierra, Lovers of the Arctic Circle), this time a slightly less surreal story. But that's not to say it's simple. Lucia (Vega) is a young woman on the run from her chaotic life. She hides out on a remote island and tries to put everything back together. Flash back six years to Madrid where she falls in love with the novelist Lorenzo (Ulloa), who has a secret past involving a holiday romance with Elena (Nimri), which produced a daughter he never knew about. As the threads of the past, present and future unfurl, everyone is drawn to this mysterious island to sort their lives out once and for all.

Yes, the story cycles around, curling back in on itself, but it does so in such a lovely way that we can't help but go along for the ride. There's an emotional resonance here that is stunningly authentic, brilliantly capturing on screen the joys of physical love and attraction. The script, direction and transparent performances from the entire cast all work together beautifully to help us feel what these people are going through. Even if the oblique storytelling and obvious symbolism leave us a bit cold, the plot does make sense on a basic level, tying up all the loose ends and helping us understand all of the characters and their emotional responses to what happens to them. Yes, Medem has once again crafted a complex, ethereal film that's both delicate and earthy, full of memorable imagery, gutsy performances and unforgettable, haunting themes.
adult themes and situations, nudity, language cert 18 11.Mar.02

R E A D E R   R E V I E W S
send your review to Shadows... "It's a pretty good film. It doesn't get to the heights of Tierra, but it's cool. The only problem is the male nudity, which is clearly unnecessary for the film. The photography and music are pretty charming, and the role of Najwa Nimri is the best." --August Fellmayer, Sandusky, Ohio 10.May.02 sex and lucia

"Once you get beyond the nudity and sex, is there really any point to this movie? Also, it should have been shot on film rather than digital. I find the former comments regarding the superfluity of male nudity perplexing. This is a movie about sex ... why shouldn't there be full-frontal male nudity? As a woman, I appreciate it because I am not interested in Vega's breasts. Obviously, some viewers are not really comfortable with this genre. The male nudity is refreshing and necessary!" --Alice Rogier, USA 5.Aug.02

"The ultimate head-trip. A seemingly purposefully puzzling Spanish indie answer to David Lynch's masterpiece Mulholland Drive. The controversy inspired by Lynch's work is sure to crossover to Lucia, which is a lot more heady, if not a whole lot more powerful and intriguing ... and sexual! I couldn't honestly tell you what the film is about, as the story begins one way, middles off another way, and climaxes a whole 'nother way to frustrate your brain some more. But this film is an experience, plain and simple." --Christopher Hall, Miami 18.Aug.02 sex and lucia

"Confusing conglomeration of scenes that somehow make wierd sense. Scenery was superb. Male nudity was refreshing. I agree, why not male nudity? My only complaint was the abundunce of tears. See it if you are not puritanistic, and have something to chew on afterwards." --The Critical Penguin, Leipzig, Germany 22.Oct.02

© 2002 by Rich Cline, Shadows on the Wall