Fit-again Fernando Torres sparkled on his 100th start for Chelsea, scoring twice to help the 2012 winners outclass Schalke 04 3-0 to go top of Champions League Group E on Tuesday (October 22). Torres produced a flying header at the far post after Branislav Ivanovic had flicked on a Frank Lampard corner in the fifth minute.
Manager Jose Mourinho expressed his confidence that Chelsea can close the gap on English Premier League leaders Arsenal with a positive result on Saturday (December 14) against Crystal Palace. The Chelsea boss, who said he will keep faith with Brazil centre back David Luiz in the face of persistent rumours of a January move away, insisted the club will not try to buy a new striker despite below par performances by the trio of Samuel Eto'o, Demba Ba and Fernando Torres.
Chelsea laboured to a 1-1 draw against Sparta Prague in the Europa League on Thursday (February 21), and again manager Rafael Benitez was forced to defend out-of-form striker Fernando Torres as the Spaniard missed a string of chances. A late, late Eden Hazard stunner saved Chelsea the ignominy of a home defeat over 90 minutes and propelled them into the last 16 of the Europa League with a 2-1 aggregate win.
Juventus outclassed holders Chelsea 3-0 at home on Tuesday (November 20), leaving them on the verge of becoming the first titleholders to be knocked out in the Champions League group stage since the competition began. The Serie A champions could have doubled their tally with a more effective strikeforce as troubled Chelsea coach Roberto Di Matteo's gamble of dropping Fernando Torres and playing without a recognised striker failed to pay off.
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KISS OF THE SPIDER WOMAN starts within the narrow walls of a Latin American prison cell. Molina (William Hurt) is telling his new cellmate, Valentin (Raul Julia), his favorite story. Molina is a delicate homosexual imprisoned for seducing a minor; Valentin is a bearded revolutionary still bleeding from his interrogation. As they trade stories, each draws a new, surprising level of difference between the two heroes: escapism versus realism, romance versus politics, gay versus straight, hero versus coward. Their unstable friendship grows more real, and their stories become more vivid--whether Molina's fondly remembered Nazi propaganda noir, Valentin's tortured romantic history, or a tropical island fable told merely to pass the time. By the end, each man has changed just enough to taste the other's tragedy--a transformation that gives each the strength to define freedom on his own terms, despite the brutality of the prison and the bleak world beyond its walls. This groundbreaking movie was the first independent film to receive the top four Oscar nominations; William Hurt delivers an Oscar-winning performance in this tribute to the power of film and fantasy as escape from inhumane conditions.
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