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Dark Habits (1984)

Lina Canalejas , Mary Carrillo  |  Unrated |  DVD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Lina Canalejas, Mary Carrillo, Laura Cepeda, Concha Grégori, Chus Lampreave
  • Format: Anamorphic, Color, Dolby, Subtitled, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: Spanish (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Fox Lorber
  • DVD Release Date: September 9, 2003
  • Run Time: 114 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Shipping: Currently, item can be shipped only within the U.S. and to APO/FPO addresses. For APO/FPO shipments, please check with the manufacturer regarding warranty and support issues.
  • ASIN: B00009XN3M
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #269,099 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Dark Habits" on IMDb

Special Features

  • New high-definition transfer

Editorial Reviews

Who but Pedro Almodóvar would make a movie in which a nightclub singer named Yolanda, whose boyfriend has died from a heroin overdose, hides from the police in a nunnery--only to discover that the nuns have more perverse lifestyles than her own? The nuns of Dark Habits use drugs, write lurid pulp novels, design high-fashion habits, and keep a tiger in their courtyard. Yolanda (Cristina Sanchez Pascual) gets caught up in the head nun's scheme to regain the patronage of a wealthy noblewoman, but betrayal, illicit love, and a campy musical number are waiting in the wings. Dark Habits features Almodóvar regulars Carmen Maura and Marisa Paredes, as well as a bit part by Cecelia Roth of All About My Mother. Fans of Almodóvar's magnificent later films (like Habla Con Ella (Talk to Her)) may find Dark Habits a bit thin, but it offers its own charms and comic delights. --Bret Fetzer

Product Description

A nightclub singer and junkie hides out with a group of unconventional nuns when her boyfriend dies of an overdose in Academy Award® winner Pedro Almodovar's irreverent and biting comedy. . new transfer, 5.1, filmographies, subtitle control

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
48 of 48 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars BEWARE!! THIS IS AN EDITED VERSION!! December 7, 2003
By Rob Ez
I must foremost thank Wellspring, the distributor of this film, for releasing this Almodóvar masterpiece on DVD..however..I am not sure who was behind this release..but, being familiar with the original release of this film..I was shocked and perplexed for the fact that this DVD issue is an EDITED version, cutting off approx. 15 mins of this film. I dont know WHy they did this, or what...I felt they cut off some important scenes..
#1..Yolana Bell's opening number, where we first see her performing..she did a song called "Dime" (which is in fact, a Spanish version of Morris Albert's "Feelings")
#2. a conversation among the Redeeming sisters and a redeemed girl from the past, where they run into each other on the Sister's outdoor stand, where they sell cakes, flowers and peppers.
#3. The Sisters' explaining to nuns from their mother chapter, that they had been robbed, talking it over the punch bowl. Also cutting off a funny line, where the sisters gossip over a younger nun, saying that "she's far to pretty for this vocation, but time will take care of that"
#4. A small bit of Sister Rat From Sewer's opening speech before Yolanda's performance for the Mother Superior's birthday party. in this DVD issue, they go straight to Sister Rat talking on stage, completely taking out her peeking out from the curtain and quieting down the crowd.
but ultimately, I am happy that this movie saw the light of day AGAIN, it had been out of print on video for, its a great buy, but be bewared that it's edited. If u have never seen this movie before, then it wont be a problem. Hardcore fans like myself might have a problem.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Old School Almodovar May 6, 2004
Seeing that Almodovar's new movie (La Mala Educacion) has to do with the catholic church, I felt it appropriate to go back and see this old one. Glad I did. Very funny film.
Though the dvd quality is not that great (and several scenes have been deleted), the film still stands up to the test of time. A drugged out singer takes refuge in a convent run by nuns with serious issues. These nuns do heroin, drop acid, read trashy novels, and even have lesbian tendencies.
The acting is great, the women (most of whom you are familiar with if you've seen other Almodovar films, Carmen Maura, Marisa Paredes, etc)do a fine job, they created a very charming and entertaining group of "sisters."
While this is not the best Almodovar film, it is still a funny ditty that is better than 95% of the films that come out these days.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Sad Release March 4, 2004
It is amazing that after all these years wating for such a great movie on DVD it finallly comes out with some scenes deleted... plus the DVD transfer is not so great... avoid this and go for the VHS, it contains the complete movie and quality is about the same...
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Early Almodovar--major influence on filmmaking June 15, 2006
Where did the Whoopi Goldberg flick Sister Act come from? Dark Habits. Where did Hal Hartley get the idea for a nun who writes porno novels in his film Amateur? Dark Habits.

Almodovar is a unique figure in global cinema; of that there is no doubt. It's interesting to see his progress as a filmmaker which is dotted here and there with films that are full of great ideas, some of which have juice and some of which don't quite gel. What Have I Done to Deserve This?, the film immediately preceding Dark Habits, gels and works really well. Dark Habits has a lot of good ideas but does not quite seem to gel.

But some of it--parts, ideas, scenes here and there--are so creative they make you sit up and almost shout. A Mother Superior who shoots smack? A nun with a full grown pet tiger? Another nun who writes trashy romance novels? Great ideas. One of the absolute best sequences in the film is that in which junkie-hooker-nightclub singer Yolanda sings a parting song at the Holy Redeemers convent accompanied by three nuns who play instruments and also do backup singing (obviously lip-synched). This is a terrific scene full of bounce that makes you realize Almodovar is a truly gifted filmmaker.

Alas the chops shown in this one sequence are not consistent throughout the film. The ending is not as strong as it should have been, unfortunately, which makes it all the more disappointing when so many great ideas have passed you by during the course of the film.

Worth seeing because of the uniqueness that is Pedro Almodovar. Not one of his best, though. (My favorites are Live Flesh, What Have I Done to Deserve This? and Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown).
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
The very fact that you are going to watch nuns snorting cocaine, and even craving for it, should give you an idea of how far Almodovar went to give an alternative view of what a "convent" is in this movie.

This is early Almodovar, and if you've seen his other films, you know what to expect. If you haven't seen them, then you might be surprised. The film is funny, unpredictable, and endearing in a kinky, warped kind of way. Almodovar's nuns are wonderful characters. With straight faces and looks of piety, they do outrageous things without batting an eye. There are probably many ways to interpret the film, but I think it's about acceptance. We're all "sinners" in one way or another, as the nuns would say, and it's not up to us to judge or condemn other people. The sisters are very forgiving - in fact, they love sinners! - and they create a little haven where marginal people can find shelter. They are eccentric, they do things that mainstream society condemns, but they don't really do any harm to anyone and maybe even help some people find their path in life.

This isn't the Catholic Church's idea of what a convent should be like, and I understand that very devout people would be offended by the way Almod?var treats the subject. Still, he does it in a kind of gentle, good humored way and he offers an alternative vision of religious devotion that can make you laugh if you aren't too uptight about these things. Things don't always make sense, but that's fine, things don't make sense in life sometimes, either.

Recommended to the Almodovar/Spanish/foreign fans who shouldn't expect this one to be better than his usual films.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars brilliant and funny
I have always loved this movie, now I finally have it on dvd. This is Almodovar at its best, brilliant and funny
Published 3 months ago by Daniel C.
5.0 out of 5 stars Love Almodovar
My favorite movie Love Almodovar, I didn't pay attention on the region which kind of sucked but the movie is just gold
Published 9 months ago by Daniel Enrique Navarro Valdez
5.0 out of 5 stars The Real SISTER ACT...
DARK HABITS is one of the strangest, most divinely humorous movies I've ever seen! A nightclub singer named Yolanda goes into hiding after her fellow, heroin-addicted boyfriend... Read more
Published 16 months ago by Bindy Sue Frřnkünschtein
5.0 out of 5 stars Great fun
Ignore the mediocre reviews. Dark Habits is delightful, no less so than Almodóvar's later, more popular movies. Read more
Published on January 19, 2012 by J. Martin
3.0 out of 5 stars Great characters
The film is not excellent but the characters are. The film should be watched for the characters it creates. Read more
Published on February 3, 2008 by Morrigan Alexandros
4.0 out of 5 stars Pleasantly weird
Classic Pedro Almodovar movie. Dark and strangely funny. Not as commercial or light as "Woman on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown", but still entertaining. Read more
Published on September 4, 2005 by M. Kendrick
5.0 out of 5 stars The Pleasures of Pedro Almodovar
Perhaps it is because Spain is the place of origin of the Surrealism movement in art that has propelled Pedro Almodovar's career. Read more
Published on January 5, 2004 by Grady Harp
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