Kiss of the Spider Woman

Kiss of the Spider Woman Movie Poster

Kiss of the Spider Woman was released in 1985 and starred William Hurt as Louis Molina and Raul Julia as Valentin Arregui.  The movie received positive reviews on its release (even Roger Ebert gave it 3.5 out of 4 stars).  It received a number of Academy Award nominations, and the Best Actor award went to William Hurt.

This movie is basically a character study of two prisoners in a Brazilian jail who are very much opposites.  Valentin (Raul Julia) is a political prisoner, and Louis Molina (Hurt) is a homosexual pedophile.  In order to help pass the time and comfort Valentin, Molina tells Valentin stories, and the two become unlikely friends.  In reality, however, Molina is spying on Valentin for the Brazilian secret police, in the hopes that Valentin might give up information on the whereabouts of the revolutionary’s headquarters.  In return, Molina is promised parole.

As the movie rolls on, Molina falls in love with Valentin, and it does not go unrequited.  In the end, Molina does get information from Valentin, but it ultimately results in Molina’s violent death.  Valentin, however, remains in prison as his torture continues.