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Lets get it clear right at the beginning. Spanish Beauty is definitely not a film for the Indian audience. It's an outright Spanish film dubbed for the subcontinent mass. We haven't had a mainstream release yet which can tackle complicated issues beyond simple infidelity with indifference. Our desi Brokeback was "Dunno Y... Naa Jaane Kyon" which can make you cringe with the name itself. So, what was the reason to come out with a release like this? Only to encash on Barbara Mori's popularity post Kites. But neither was Kites a hit nor are our female oriented films successful.
Now, coming to the movie, if you have already watched the original Spanish version "La Mujer De Mi Hermano" or "The Wife of My Brother" - then there's nothing exciting about watching it again. However, if you haven't done so - then you might find it worth a watch. After all, its barely an hour and half long. And, it has its share of pluses too.
Sonia (played by our beautiful Barabara Mori) is the beautiful wife in question, who has been married to Ishan (Christian Meier) for a decade now, childless and under the impression that neither of them can conceive. They make love on Saturdays (weekend plans!!) and live a life together thats devoid of any spark of attraction. As much as Sonia tries to seduce her husband, he is just too stoic and mechanical to fall for it.
Enters Rohan, Ishan's long lost friend. The original movie had brothers but that had been changed, perhaps to suit the sensibilities of the audience who wouldn't have accepted what follows next. Rohan is a photographer-cum-painter with dark edged nails as a testimony to his profession, with unkempt looks and raw sexual appeal. It doesn't take much time for him to sweep our lady off her feet to his bed. Sonia, already suffering from lack of passion, basks in this new found love. They make love and keep enjoying each other's company off and on the bed.
On one occasion, Rohan discloses to Sonia that Ishan is gay and she realises it was the missing piece of her life's jigsaw. She questions, Ishan declines and she leaves.
This is when she realises that all her previous medical tests were false and she is pregnant. Rohan (shown before as commitment phobic) provides her with two options - either get rid of the child or convince Ishan that the child is his. In short, he dumps her.
Why does Rohan do so? He was avenging the sexual exploitation by Ishan on him during their childhood. Another angle!
This is when the pati Ishan returns and proposes to accept the child, provided she accepts the fact that he is gay and will continue having sex with other men. She is absolutely okay with it. Rather, she feels bad that she was adulterous and not the ideal wife, and accepts her man back.
The ending is super-cliched and very Hindi film! Yet, there are certain things which works well for the movie!
First and foremost, Barbara Mori. She is not only gorgeous but also impresses with her acting abilities. No wonder, the Kites team had selected her based on this movie. The leading guys - Christian and Manolo execute their roles to perfection. While Christian portrays the pathos of a gay man trapped in a marriage with a lot of maturity, Manolo does justice to his part. Bruno Bichir as Barbara's friend adds in humor effectively. Though set mostly indoor, the film is beautifully shot. The moments of silences are very effectively used and the background music enhances the mood of the film.
If something works against the film, it is the desperation to convince the viewers about every character's nobility. There was a justification for everything which seemed very forced. So is the idea of dropping everything in the swimming pool.
But barring these glitches, if you like stories on complex relationships, then there is a chance you might end up liking the movie.