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Mad Love (2001)

4.0 out of 5 stars 46 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

The love story that transformed Juana, Queen of Spain, into Juana "The mad". A story of passions, lies and jealousy with a political fight behind it.

Amazon.com

Spain's answer to Elizabeth is a 16th-century political conspiracy drama inspired by the true story of the "mad" Queen Joan and transformed by septuagenarian Vicente Aranda (Lovers, Jealousy) into an earthy bodice ripper. Age certainly hasn't dulled his taste for hot-blooded cinema. Spanish beauty Pilar López de Ayala, with her doe eyes and milky complexion, is the royal innocent sacrificed in a political marriage to the swarthy Prince Philip (Daniele Liotti with a Fabio mane of hair), a womanizing cad whose wandering eye transforms the naive virgin into a tempestuously jealous wife. Aranda matches Pedro Almodóvar in the arena of self-destructive love, obsessive passion, sweaty cinematic sex, and deliriously melodramatic spectacle. If this portrait of Joan as a volatile package of emotional nitroglycerin borders on melodramatic cliché, López de Ayala gives her a fiery, full-blooded passion and Aranda mounts her romantic obsession in an unhinged, undeniably lusty costume drama. --Sean Axmaker

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Pilar Lopez de Ayala, Daniele Liotti, Giuliano Gemma
  • Directors: Vicente Aranda
  • Producers: Enrique Cerezo
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Anamorphic, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: Spanish (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, French
  • Region: Region 1 encoding (US and Canada only)
    PLEASE NOTE:
    Some Region 1 DVDs may contain Regional Coding Enhancement (RCE). Some, but not all, of our international customers have had problems playing these enhanced discs on what are called "region-free" DVD players. For more information on RCE, click .
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    R
    Restricted
  • Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: January 21, 2003
  • Run Time: 119 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (46 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00007G1V9
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #76,437 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Mad Love (2001)" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Brian E. Erland HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on December 10, 2005
Format: DVD
Note: Castillian Spanish with English and French subtitles.

Based on historical accounts, director Vincent Aranda has created a lavish, sumptuous film set in 16th century Flandes, Spain. Princess Juana de Castilla (Pilar Lopez de Ayala) as come to fulfill her aristocratic obligation in an arranged marriage with Archduke Felipe of Austria (Daniele Liotti).

What begins as a great romance quickly degenerates into a very sad and depressing tale of infidelity on the part of Felipe and obsessive compulsive paranoia displayed by the frantic Juana. Juana's obsession with her husbands affairs escalate behaviors that are soon the main subject of gossip for the aristocracy and the labeling of the desperate Juana as "Joan the Mad."

When Juana's Mother and older brothers' die unexpectedly she now becomes heir to the throne of Spain. Will she reign as Queen, or will Felipe succeed in having her proclaimed mad by the Spanish court and put away?

Fine performances all around by this all Spanish cast, especially by the two main characters; Pilar Lopez de Ayala and Daniele Liotti. Also in a small but memorable role is the seductive beauty Manuela Arcuri as the Moorish princess Aixa-Beatriz.
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By A Customer on March 10, 2004
Format: DVD
RECOMMENDED for anyone who enjoys a well-directed, historical film. Aranda fills this film with accurate details and with an interesting contemporary and feminist twist. His interest in forlorn love is at its best here, utilizing one of the lesser-known, but significant personages (among those in the U.S.,) as a tour-de-force vehicle into the narrow-minded, fickle, and antiquated Spanish 15-th century concept of women.
Though Aranda is notorious for explicit sexual portrayals, the ones in this film are not excessive nor senseless. Everything seems to have its place, and is quite believeable. FIVE STARS!!!
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By A Customer on February 19, 2003
Format: DVD
I rented this film with two friends on a whim, for lack of anything better looking at Blockbuster. As soon as the opening shot panned out we were hooked. The plot was stunning, the costumes rich and beautiful. The cinematography was excellent and the cast could not be beat. This was not a movie where sex was thrown in to hook some otherwise uninterested viewers, it was necessary to the plot and was handled appropriatly. Enough steam was in the sex to display the passion but it was tasteful and honest and the characteres remained themselves in the sack. Overall this movie was gorgeous and stunning, and it isn't often I tell all my friends about how great a film was. I've told everyone about Mad Love since I saw it a week ago.
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Format: DVD
A costume drama masquerading as an art-house sexual intrigue, MAD LOVE is far more about the trials of the human heart than it is about the temptations of the human flesh.
Queen Isabella of Spain arranges the marriage of her daughter, Joan, to Philip -- a romance novel covermodel complete with the long hair and bulging biceps if there ever was one -- a wealthy nobleman. Sexually awakened by Philip's hunger, Joan finds emotional contentment in loving her husband, bearing his children, and birthing heirs to her inevitable kingdom. However, after Philip's wandering eye is discovered, Joan edges further and further into acts of desperation to prove that the love she so long believed in was more than a facade.
Wonderfully photographed and evenly paced, LOVE moves briskly toward its inevitably grim climax, one perhaps not tidy enough for viewers all too sensitived to filmdom's increasing fascination with "alternate endings" and "living happily ever after." Arguably, fiction would've postulated a far more dramatic resolution to such an expansive tale of betrayal, but history teaches that perhaps the facts of the matter -- that perhaps the queen never finds happiness and that, perhaps, there are no answers in death -- are still the best representation.
As the ever slipping into obsession Queen Joan, Pilar Lopez De Ayala is a remarkable discovery. She tiptoes deftly between every notch on the emotional scale -- ecstacy, frenzy, compulsion, bitterness -- with accomplished ease.
However, the film's packaging and advertising would lead one to the conclusion that MAD LOVE is a bodice ripper of Academy Award proportions, and this is entirely misleading. While the film does boast several sexual encounters, they are -- with one notable exception -- relatively brief.
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Format: Amazon Video Verified Purchase
I had no problem with this movie being in Spanish with English captions. I LOVE history and the sound of the Spanish language. Personally, I think that Juana was most likely Bipolar, but there were no prescription drugs back then to help keep her "balanced out". Most of the movie showed instances of her infatuation with her husband, "Philip the Handsome", who was really "Philip the Philandering Pig". I wished the movie could have been longer and I would have loved if it showed more about the interactions she had with her children. Like when her son Charles and her daughter Eleanor visited her. And how her son Ferdinand was snatched from her by her scheming father. Also, more about the relationship she had with her youngest child, daughter Catalina, who lived with her for quite a few years in virtual confinement. The acting was superb. I have watched it twice already, and each time, wish there was MORE!
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