Monday, April 1, 2013

Kiss of the Spider Woman

1985 Brazilian/American Feature

Cast: William Hurt, Raúl Juliá, Sonia Braga, José Lewgoy and Milton Gonçalves
Director: Héctor Babenco
Writer: Leonard Schrader, based on the novel by Manuel Puig

An unlikely relationship develops between two very different men - political prisoner Valentin Arregui and gay window dresser Luis Molina - sharing a Brazilian prison cell.


  • Internet Movie Database: 7.4/10
  • Rotten Tomatoes - Critics: 88% / Audience: 76 %
  • Metacritic - Critics: 80% / Audience: 6.3%
  • OMG rating: 8/10

  • DVD/Blu-ray: Available
  • Soundtrack: Available
  • Book: Available


  • Academy Award for Best Actor (Hurt); also nominated for Best Picture, Director and Adapted Screenplay.
  • BAFTA Award for Best Actor (Hurt).
  • Cannes Film Festival Award for Best Actor (Hurt).
  • David di Donatello Award Award for Best Foreign Actor (Hurt).
  • Golden Globe nominations for Best Picture - Drama, Actor - Drama (Hurt and Juliá) and Supporting Actress (Braga).
  • Independent Spirit Award for Special Distinction.
  • London Critics Circle Film Award for Actor of the Year (Hurt).
  • Los Angeles Film Critics Association Award for Best Actor (Hurt).
  • National Board of Review Awards for Best Actor (Hurt and Juliá).

  • Author Manuel Puig adapted his 1976 novel Kiss of the Spider Woman into a stage play in 1983. It was first staged in London in 1985, the same year the film version was released.
  • Casting Call: Burt Lancaster.
  • William Hurt was the first actor to win an Oscar for playing an openly gay character.
  • A stage musical adaptation of Kiss of the Spider Woman, with music by John Kander and Fred Ebb and a book by Terrence McNally, opened on Broadway in 1993. It was nominated for 11 Tony Awards, and won seven, including Best Musical. Brent Carver and Anthony Crivello, who played Molina and Valentin, both won Tonys, as did Chita Rivera as the vampy "Spider Woman", later played by Vanessa Williams and Maria Conchita Alonso.

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