Saturday, June 27, 2020

1104. Roma

Directed by Alfonso Cuaron

We must once again, shift aside our anger and bitterness over the wrongs Alfonso Cuaron has inflicted upon us, in order to judge this next movie fairly. The wrongs I am speaking of, naturally, are his bungling of the Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban movie. How can we do this, I hear you cry indignantly from behind your keyboards. Such things can't be forgotten, and certainly never forgiven! He ruined Dumbledore's character, you shout, and made them all wear Muggle clothing! Yes, believe me, I understand, but the List has called upon our vestiges of forgiveness before and we have gotten through it. I must ask you all to soldier on as bravely as you can, keep calm, and endure.

Roma follows the life of Cleo, a live in maid for an affluent family in Mexico City, 1970. Cleo becomes pregnant by her boyfriend Fermin, who has a less than ideal reaction to the news. While Cleo copes with her pregnancy, her employer Sofia attempts to hide her marital problems from the her children.

So this is the kind of story that I would probably love to explore in novel format, with somebody like Iris Murdoch or Virginia Woolf at the helm. As a movie, I was less enthused: it dragged in places and I can't really make a case for why it needed to be in black and white. It just seemed like a rather shallow attempt at making the film appear artier than it was.

That being said, I was still intrigued by the characters, although Cleo was certainly a tough nut to crack.  The ending was moving, but left me with one burning question: why did Cuaron give all of Ron's good lines to Hermione?

RATING: ***--

Interesting Facts:

The delivery scene was done in one take.

Shot in chronological order.

Cuaron calls this the most essential movie of his career. That hurts, Cuaron.

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