Oscar, BAFTA & Golden Globe
Best Director, best foreign language film
BAFTA Best Film
The surprising thing is that the film isn’t sentimental or self-indulgent at all, which is truly amazing given that it is about Alfonso Cuarón’s memories and impressions of the world in which he grew up. It isn’t about him at all; it is about the maid he loved so much, the town and capturing the feel of the day.
Cuarón has done more than break through walls of language, culture and class to craft the best movie of the year.
Pairing thrilling technical prowess with profound artistic vision, Alfonso Cuarón has made a masterpiece, at once understated and otherworldly. We need more filmmakers like him.
Cleo is one of two domestic workers who help Antonio and Sofía take care of their four children in 1970s Mexico City. Complications soon arise when Antonio suddenly runs away with his mistress and Cleo finds out that she’s pregnant. When Sofía decides to take the kids on vacation, she invites Cleo for a much-needed getaway to clear her mind and bond with the family.
Extremely slow paced for at least the first half, you have to just sit back and immerse yourself in the family being presented and the focus on the mundane activities of everyday life. Cuarón shot the film himself in black and white, and it is as gorgeous as everyone says. The attention to detail is lovely. Everything you see is just as Cuarón wanted it to be. Even the dialect had to be perfect, a task which was difficult given that he remembered it being a certain way back in 1971 and that’s how it had to sound. The two maids were first-time actors – as is much of the cast – and they did fabulous work. Everyone did.
USA 2018, 135 min, rated M (violence, nudity, offensive language & content that may disturb)
Directed by Alfonso Cuarón
Starring Yalitza Aparicio, Marina de Tavira, Diego Cortina Autrey, Carlos Peralta, Marco Graf & Nancy Garcia Garcia