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3 reviews, 3 user ratings

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Mujer de mi hermano, La
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by William Goss

"The Lifestyles of the Rich and the Subtitled"
3 stars

Zoe’s maid tells her that she (Barbara Mori) looks lovely today. Of course she does. She is beautiful. Everything is beautiful. Everything except her love life, where she would desire a little less conversation and a little more action. Seeing as her husband, Ignacio (Christian Meier), is so uptight that he only screws on Saturdays, she fulfills herself the other six days of the week by means of his brother, Gonzalo (Manolo Cardona). Ay caramba, indeed!

Oh, yes, La Mujer de Mi Hermano (My Brother’s Wife) is little more than a glossy, glorified telenovela, full of pretty people keeping pretty secrets and telling pretty lies, all while they do dirty deeds (yet still look pretty in the process). When Zoe initially invites Gonzalo to sleep with her upstairs, she follows it up with those three little words: “Nothing will happen.” Immediately, smooching commences, soon followed by other related activities, and the love triangle is on. She confides to her token gay pal, who apparently has no life outside of listening to her illicit undertakings. As one man calls for lunch, the other calls for lust. Guess which hunger she satisfies first. Small-scale defiance occurs, particularly involving the disposal of CDs, paintings, and cell phones into their pristine pool, and the lovers are as bold as to participate in manual pleasure just a wall away from where family awaits at the dinner table. Zoe suspects Ignacio of being gay, Ignacio suspects Zoe of an affair, so on and so forth.

The sole reason that this whole tawdry affair is tolerable is because the biggest bombshells are greeted with the flattest faces, which almost creates an odd charm to witnessing such soap opera melodrama delivered with such straight faces. Many scenes revolve around Zoe and Ignacio’s home, constructed of concrete, steel, and plenty of glass. What happens inside couldn’t be hidden even if they wanted it to, yet the industrial environment complements the stark cinematography and austere acting. Zoe complains about a lack of passion in her marriage, but the sex scenes themselves are relatively detached. For an R rating, there’s a hearty amount of sex, yet no gratuitous nudity? That’s just cold.

Even the third act revelations are given all the gravity of a shrug, which almost works better than a cheesier, more exaggerated alternative (in that case, one could just stay home and flip on Telemundo). Nothing here is original, but it all makes for a love triangle that is incredibly passable on the most superficial terms, a feat few films can pull off. Then again, tossing a telenovela onto a big screen isn’t exactly setting the bar high, no matter how beautiful the bar looks.

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originally posted: 05/14/06 15:58:56
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User Comments

5/15/07 David Pollastrini All the women in this film are hot! 2 stars
10/03/06 nesrine 44 3 stars
5/18/06 michael dont let the title scare you away 3 stars
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  14-Apr-2006 (R)
  DVD: 25-Jul-2006



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