Revolving around an eccentric family of women from a wind-swept region south of Madrid, Raimunda (Penelope Cruz) is a working-class woman forced to go to great lengths to protect her 14-year-old daughter Paula (Yohana Cobo). To top off the family crisis, her mother Irene (Carmen Maura) comes back from the dead to tie up loose ends.
Andrea Gronvall [A] gritty melodrama tempered by surreal black humor.
Desson Thomson A deeply entertaining experience that engages our hearts as well as our funny bones.
Andrew Sarris The late Francois Truffaut was frequently described as a filmmaker who loved women, but not even Monsieur Truffuat could come close to Senor Almodovar in his intelligent, perceptive and creative appreciation of women in Volver.
Richard Roeper It's very moving, It's beautifully done.
Dana Stevens [Almodovar's] once-kitschy obsession with color and surface continues to deepen into a big, bold, almost painterly style.
Joe Morgenstern From the very first shot of Volver... you know you're in masterful hands.
David Germain [A] vibrant film that's pure class, pure imagination and pure Almodovar.
Scott Foundas The movie is enjoyable, but not passionately engaging in the way we've come to expect from Almodovar, and it leaves you somewhat cold in spite of the warmth of Cruz's galvanic performance.
Rex Reed Once again, the director confronts women on the verge of a nervous breakdown in a film full of humor and affection.
David Ansen Almodovar's generous vision isn't just unique, it's color-coordinated.
Rob Nelson Red, in every conceivable shade, is, not surprisingly, a key color in Volver, a movie about the towering virtues of high heels and the indomitable power of good old 35mm celluloid.
David Edelstein What a run this millennium for Pedro Almodovar: one strange and fabulous feature after the next, each in a different style, each so deftly controlled that you hardly register its subversiveness until after you've been hooked by its story.
Anthony Lane ...The film, against my wishes, left me unmoved.
Stephanie Zacharek This is a movie about mothers and children that dispatches with the usual goopy sentiment. Volver reassures us that you can go home again -- if only in the movies.
Ben Walters ...It's some achievement that the film is both funnier and more moving on repeated viewing, when its pervasive dramatic ironies emerge.
Ray Bennett Richly entertaining fantasy from a cinematic master.
Jonathan Holland Richly evocative.