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Other Side of The Bed, The (El Otro Lado De La Cama) (15)

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The ViewLondon Review

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Review byMatthew Turner20/04/2004

Three out of Five stars
Running time: 112 mins

Enjoyable, well acted sex comedy, interspersed with surprisingly effective (but eventually slightly tedious) musical numbers.

The Other Side of the Bed was a huge box office hit in Spain a couple of years ago and was nominated for 6 Goyas (the Spanish equivalent of the Oscars). Essentially, it’s a spirited bed-hopping comedy, though it manages to take several well-aimed swipes at Latin machismo along the way.

Wild Bed-hopping Antics

The plot centres on four characters. Shaggy-haired Pedro (Guillermo Toledo) has just been dumped by his girlfriend Paula (Natalia Verbeke, from Jump Tomorrow) and cries on the shoulders of his two best friends, long-standing couple Javier (Ernesto Alterio) and Sonia (Paz Vega, from Sex and Lucia).

However, Javier is a lying, cheating hijo de puta and has been secretly seeing Paula and telling her that he’s going to dump Sonia. Meanwhile, Sonia begins to fall for Pedro’s hangdog charms and Javier somehow gets it into his head that Sonia’s a lesbian…

The script is excellent – there’s either a decent laugh or a sex scene every few minutes - and the performances are all superb. However, what makes the film unusual is that every few minutes, some of the characters burst into song and dance numbers. This sounds like it shouldn’t work, but, surprisingly, it does, although you do start to dread them towards the end.

In addition, the film takes several risks in terms of not following the usual romcom conventions, although it chickens out of giving us a full-on subversive ending, instead giving us one that is weakly ambiguous. That said, it’s still well worth seeing.

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Content updated: 17/12/2017 02:13

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