From the title of the movie 'All About My Mother’ it is not hard to conclude that the heroine in this film is a women. Manuela whom is a single mother, nurse, and organ donor counselor living in Madrid easily stands out as a character that goes against the Latino stereotype. Most Latin women are commonly known as submissive and can tend to stay in the shadow of their husband. They are also known to stay with their husbands while raising their children all under one household. Manuela goes outside the realm and helps herself independently and surprisingly helps a lot of surrounding characters in need.
After her recovery from her tragic loss, she is able to recapture meaning in her life by redirecting her motherly role upon many people she encounters in Barcelona. Rosa, Agrado, Huma, Nina, and, even Lola were some what guided by Manuela. She personifies motherhood from the beginning with her son, through the middle with Rosa and the other women that she helps. Female solidarity defines her and the other women characters as well. These characters, in All About My Mother, help one another find comfort, companionship, and love, as well as more real life necessities, like a job or a place to stay. One of my favorite scenes in the film involves the four most appealing female characters, Manuela, Agrado, Rosa, and Huma, bonding together in Manuela’s apartment, laughing over the titillating sound of various words for the male organ. This scene signified how a group of mostly single Latin women can sit around and poke fun at the male species. This is something that I would have found ironic and against the stereotypes I have mentioned.
As discussed in class and the text Historically Latinos have not only been portrayed negatively through stereotypes but they have also been largely ignored and excluded from most American Media. This movie redefined and went against what I have concluded from Latin women. Since all of the main characters in this film are women or goal is to portray a woman, each viewer’s perception of the hidden merits of a Latino woman, which is unconditional support versus basic moral behavior, will also determine how each viewer feels about Almodovar’s portrayal of women. It is interesting, for example, that one reviewer states that All About My Mother is a “tribute to Latin womanhood”. The women in All About My Mother, taken collectively, are admirable in how they support one another, and seemed strong up until the end were ‘risky’ choices are made. This movie could be a tribute in one sense, but a pretty blunt character portrayal in another.