Real man of La Mancha

Filmmaker Almodovar returns home

Pedro Almodovar, waving at right, took the title of his latest film “Volver” (“Return” in English) seriously, going back to his native La Mancha on March 10 — a dusty plain south of Madrid — to stage the pic’s world premiere in Puertollano, just 25 miles from his birthplace.

The homecoming king was accompanied by pic’s Carmen Maura, Yohana Cobo and Blanca Portillo.

“Of the 16 films I’ve made so far, I don’t know if ‘Volver’ is my best, but it’s the one that’s moved me most,” Almodovar told fellow Manchegans, who gave him a long standing ovation.

Pic, with star Penelope Cruz in attendance, also was warmly received at a Madrid press screening three days later.

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