Mad Love (2002) - Rotten Tomatoes

Mad Love (2002)



Critic Consensus: An overwrought bodice-ripper, Mad Love is more silly than dramatic.

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Movie Info

This lavish historical drama was inspired by the true story of Juana the Mad, who became Queen of Spain before her willfulness and jealousy robbed her of her power. During the late 15th century, Juana (Pilar Lopez de Ayala) was born to the Spanish royal family, and as a teenager her mother, Queen Isabella (Susy Sanchez), arranged for her to marry Archduke Philip (Daniele Liotti) of Brussels. The marriage is a matter of politics more than anything else, and Juana is upset that she must leave behind Alvaro de Estuniga (Eloy Azorin), the boy she loves, but from the first time she sees Felipe, she's passionately attracted to him, and he soon awakens her to the joys of lovemaking. While Juana is happy with her new husband, Philip soon reveals himself to be an incorrigible womanizer (and rapidly loses sexual interest in her), leading to much tension between Philip and Juana. To complicate matters further, her sexual appetite and desire to possess her husband only build, and soon, she is completely out of control on an emotional level - throwing tantrums in the rain, lapsing into arousal while she breast feeds and evincing a spectrum of equally questionable behavior that leads others (including Philip) to dub her "Juana the Mad."In time, Juana becomes the Queen of Spain, but her rise to power is tempered by Felipe' s behind-the-scenes machinations to have her dethroned once and for all. Lo and behold, she falls into the trap of missing this - as she's too distracted by Philip's continued infidelity. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi
R (for sexuality/nudity)
Art House & International , Drama , Romance
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:

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Daniele Liotti
as Archduke Philip
Eloy Azorin
as Alvaro
Rosana Pastor
as Elvira
Giuliano Gemma
as De Veyre
Chema de Miguel
as Don Juan Manuel
Andrés Lima
as Marquis of Villena
Guillermo Toledo
as Captain Corrales
Cipriano Lodosa
as Marliano
Susy Sanchez
as Queen Isabella
Héctor Colomé
as King Ferdinand
Jorge Monje
as Hernan
Sol Abad
as Mucama
Sonia Madrid
as Brigitte
Cristina Solano
as Analfabeta
Ricardo Garcia Robledo
as Juan as a Child
Jennifer Diaz
as Maria as a Child
Nerea Garcia
as Catalina as a Child
Virginia Olmas
as Isabel as a Child
Fidel Almansa
as Fray Andrea
Ana Villa
as Spanish Woman #1
Maria de los Angeles Morales
as Spanish Woman #2
Eva Zapico
as Spanish Woman #3
Carlos Martinez
as Francisco de Borja
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Critic Reviews for Mad Love

All Critics (49) | Top Critics (17)

A sumptuously-appointed account of the life of the 16th-century Spanish royal Joan of Castile.

Full Review… | January 10, 2003
Toronto Star
Top Critic

Nothing more or less than an outright bodice-ripper -- it should have ditched the artsy pretensions and revelled in the entertaining shallows.

Full Review… | January 10, 2003
Globe and Mail
Top Critic

There's a little violence and lots of sex in a bid to hold our attention, but it grows monotonous after a while, as do Joan and Philip's repetitive arguments, schemes and treachery.

Full Review… | October 3, 2002
Dallas Morning News
Top Critic

Forget the Psychology 101 study of romantic obsession and just watch the procession of costumes in castles and this won't seem like such a bore.

October 3, 2002
Orlando Sentinel
Top Critic

It's López de Ayala's show, and she's relentless in her energy and passion.

Full Review… | September 27, 2002
Miami Herald
Top Critic

A bodice-ripper for intellectuals.

Full Review… | September 20, 2002
Washington Post
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Mad Love

It's from spain, so of course it has lots of tits. Can't remember much else.

Tsubaki Sanjuro
Tsubaki Sanjuro

Super Reviewer


Though not much interested in the Spanish history, I really loved the amazing sets and the very beautiful actress who portrayed the allegedly crazy queen. The way her obsession with her not so trustworthy husband drives her to the point of madness is really captured well.

Sajin P A
Sajin P A

Super Reviewer

High production values barely save this film from its overdramatized writing and its stubborn lack of nuance.

Nick Anno
Nick Anno

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