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The Penelope Cruz Bio

The Penelope Cruz Review –

by Nate Lee

Best Film:


Cruz seems like a completely different person in the hands of Spanish director Almodovar. She is the core of this magnificent exploration of a family of women and their secrets in a small Spanish town.

Great Performances You May Not Have Seen:
Volver (woman struggling in small Spanish town, Oscar and Golden Globe-nominated performance)
Open Your Eyes (the all-consuming object of desire of a dreaming man and the original version of "Vanilla Sky")
Belle Epoque (youngest of four beautiful daughters after the same man)
All About My Mother (pregnant nun)
All the Pretty Horses (opposite Matt Damon)
Blow (opposite Johnny Depp)
Head in the Clouds (a three-way with Charlize Theron)
Vicky Christina Barcelona (a three-way with Scarlett Johanssen)
Captain Corelli's Mandolin (opposite Nicolas Cage)
Nine (Daniel Day Lewis's mistress)
Vanilla Sky
The Real Penelope Cruz:
Vanilla Sky

Though she dances beautifully in a few films, and moves with the seductive grace of a dancer in all her films, she plays a dancer in Vanilla Sky. Her role as innocent seductress / object of desire also seems to reflect her real life as well as other roles. The fact that she plays the exact same role, with many of the same lines, as in the original Spanish version, "Open Your Eyes", only makes it more clear that this is the real Cruz. She is a dancer here instead of a so-so mime in "Open".
Acting Style:
Passion. A different kind of Latin passion than the Americanized Catherine Zeta-Jones, and a different kind of beauty, too. Cruz is far from a perfect beauty, but her imperfections add to her charm and interest. Though she most often comes off as waifish, she is more natural and compelling as the woman in charge.
Bits and Quirks:
What, besides wrapping her arms and legs around her lover, you mean? Those big "open your eyes" ojos have a life of their own, mostly burning through the hearts of men. The hair is used, too, as a seductive tool. Pinned back, though, it gives her a regal look, particularly in profile, especially when combined with the arched back and/or stiff neck.
Great Scenes:

> Getting rid of the evidence of her dead husband
> Negotiating with her neighbors in order to get food to feed the film crew
> Singing the song for the film crew
> Discovering her mother and her secret

Open Your Eyes

> Exchanging the drawings
> The love scenes
> Taking off the mask

Vanilla Sky

> Exchanging the drawings
> Walking in the park with Cruise
> Taking off the mask, piece by piece


> Hiding in the well
> Hiding in the Civil War boat

Belle Epoque

> Her various tantrums
> The costume ball

Head In The Clouds

> Love scenes with Charlize Theron

Vicky Christina Barcelona

> Love scenes with Scarlett Johanssen
> Love scenes with Javier Bardem

Jamon Jamon

> Love scenes with Javier Bardem
Go to the... Penelope Cruz Bio