|Modern Pulp||Jul 26 2009|
Based on the poster, you’d think Kiss of the Spider Woman is about a femme fatale beguiling men in some romantic and faraway land. Close—it’s about two guys rotting away in a prison cell in some unnamed Latin American dictatorship. One of them—played by William Hurt in an Oscar-winning role—passes the time by telling his cellmate stories about an old Nazi propaganda film he once saw. And so in the form of his nostalgic narrative what we get is a film within a film and that’s where most of the romantic stuff comes in. Based on a novel by Manuel Puig, Spider Woman managed the rare showbiz trifecta of being produced as a play, a Hollywood film, and a Broadway musical. The movie is excellent, and quite dark, but we won’t recommend it because it isn’t really pulp. The poster on the other hand, with a lovely depiction of a character Sonia Braga plays in the film within a film, just kills. Kiss of the Spider Woman opened today in the U.S. in 1985.