Parallel Mothers, starring Penélope Cruz and directed by Pedro Almodovar, is "a stirring and somber exploration of secrets and hidden histories," New York Film Festival Director Eugene Hernandez says in a statement

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Penélope Cruz's New Movie Parallel Mothers
Penélope Cruz (R) in Parallel Mothers
| Credit: Sony Pictures Classics.

The 59th New York Film Festival will take its closing bow with a new movie starring Penélope Cruz.

In a release obtained by PEOPLE, reps for the annual event share that Cruz's Spanish drama Parallel Mothers will be the last film screened at Alice Tully Hall inside the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, on Oct. 8.

Directed by Oscar winner Pedro Almodóvar (Volver), the "muted contemporary melodrama" sees "two women, a generation apart, find(ing) themselves inextricably linked by their brief time together in a maternity ward," according to the release.

"The circumstances that brought them to the Madrid hospital are quite different — one accidental, the other traumatic — and a secret, hiding the truth of the bond that connects these two, is a powerful story that tackles a deep trauma in Spanish history."

The synopsis describes the character Janis (played by Cruz, 47) as "a uniquely complex, flawed, but ultimately alluring lead character, who finds herself in a morally and emotionally treacherous situation."

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NYFF
New York Film Festival
| Credit: Dia Dipasupil/Getty

"She's viewed in contrast with Ana, radiantly portrayed by newcomer Milena Smit, a discovery who brings a palpable innocence, pain, and longing to this interwoven portrait of women and motherhood," the synopsis adds.

Almodóvar, 71, calls his film's inclusion in the NYFF "a privilege and and honor" in a statement, saying the festival has "become [his] second home" after three decades of having movies screened there.

NYFF Director Eugene Hernandez describes Parallel Mothers in a statement as "a stirring and somber exploration of secrets and hidden histories — those sometimes found in families and often buried by societies — and how those skeletons can shape the course of individual lives and entire cultures."

"We're thrilled to have Pedro back at NYFF to conclude this 59th edition!" Hernandez adds.

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Meanwhile, the festival is set to open with The Tragedy of Macbeth, from writer and director Joel Coen and starring Denzel Washington and Frances McDormand as Lord and Lady Macbeth, respectively.

According to a release, the black-and-white film serves as a "boldly inventive visualization of The Scottish Play," resulting in "an anguished film that stares, mouth agape, at a sorrowful world undone by blind greed and thoughtless ambition."

Hernandez said in a statement that The Tragedy of Macbeth is "setting the stage for a momentous return to our roots" as the Lincoln Center reopens to visitors amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

"Last year was a deeply meaningful edition of NYFF; our Festival traveled to Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx and around the country via our Virtual Cinema," he added. "This year we're back in our Upper West Side home, but you'll also find us exploring new venues and ways to connect with moviegoers in person, outdoors and online — stay tuned!"

NYFF passes are now on sale, with Early Bird pricing through Sunday. Tickets will be available to the general public beginning Sept. 7 at 12 p.m. ET.