Versatility is the key to career longevity preventing stagnation and personal boredom. Whilst this affects all walks of life it is especially true of actors and directors. Many can be type-cast in certain genres. Spanish director Pedro Almodovar is among many refusing to become creatively trapped. His latest is light years away in tone from his magnificent last film The Skin I Live In. As silly and fun as his previous one was dark and brooding, I’m So Excited is a cheeky romp crafted with his brand of stylish flair.
When a plane’s landing gear is found to be faulty mid-flight, its pilots fear disaster. Wanting to allay passenger fears while averting catastrophe, they instruct the flight attendants to distract them. With those in Economy class knocked out with drugged alcohol, only those in First Class remain. Among them are lonely clairvoyant Bruna, a wicked madam Norma and mobster Infanta (Jose Maria Yazpik). With such a motley crew on-board, over-wrought drama is never far amongst the skies.
I’m So Excited finds Almodovar cutting loose. Outrageous and rude it provides much mirth. Making it work is the humour arising from the characters’ many foibles. Each has their own problems which aren’t readily solved. Forced to connect, their lives intertwine in unexpected ways. The journey they share becomes a microcosm of the human condition as desire and secrets surface.
Events move along at a good pace, never over-staying its welcome. The quick run-time helps the cast perform their roles with the right touch of glee and bewilderment. How their very odd characters interact with each other creates most of the laughs. There’s even a hint of pathos as they deal with past regrets and set to change their ways. This element ensures I’m So Excited isn’t complete nonsense and grounds things in some reality.
Although nowhere near as substantial as his previous work I’m So Excited is a good Almodovar film. A confectionery collage of human frailties, its mischievous mayhem ensures this is a plane journey you’d want to join.
Reviewed by Patrick Moore
Rating out of 10: 7