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Film Reviews: Roma

This week on the Mor Media Blog, we are highlighting two Truro & Penwith A-Level Media students, who have been on work experience this week.

Roma Feature Film

Roma (2018) spoiler review by Aaron Hinton

Roma directed by Alfonso Cuaron is a brilliant film with one of the films main

highlights being the cinematography where Cuaron has selected shots that

show wide areas and lets the action play out as if we are in the scene with the

characters allowing the audience to understand the films characters and

understand their circumstances using tracking shots which follow our

protagonist cleo as she goes about her daily routine.

Another aspect of the film I enjoyed was the performance from the character

of Cleo who the audience instantly sympathises with because of her repetitive

life of having to do chores for the family in the film. Once she becomes

pregnant the family and other characters such as Fermins' treatment of her

changes significantly showing the bias and disrespect towards members of

lower social classes in Mexico. Her performance toward the end of the film

presents her character as broken and the actress Yalitza Aparicio plays the

role which shows off the character's anguish and pain.

One aspect of the film that i thought was executed efficiently was the structure

as the story has major tonal shifts from being calm and relaxing to when the

riots are taking place the film has a chaotic feeling to it and with Cleos water

breaking on top of that it makes the audience left feeling the tension of the

scene. The film is also clever with its use of cyclical structure by starting with a

plane flying in the sky and also finishing with it.

Cuaron succeeds in making the films setting of Mexico feel detailed through

the use of black and white colour grading which further adds to the feeling of

the 1970s and the films setting feels real and lived in as we see the Mexican

people going about on a busy day and the riots toward the end of the film feel


Roma Feature Film

Roma, written by Indiya Jane Simon.

Cuarón takes his time to consider each frame and pay attention to every detail in it, and because of this the film has some incredibly beautiful cinematography that adds to the emotion of the movie. However, sometimes it feels like some beautiful frames sit on the screen for a bit too long, which caused me to lose attention at some points. This happened a couple times throughout the film but the boredom was outweighed largely by the beauty and creativity of many of the shots that immersed you into the story (i especially loved all of the slow pans and tracking shots). 

Although it did bore me sometimes the drawn put frames create a sense of realism. Instead of cutting and editing the story to what the audience needs to see Cuarón puts the whole story on the screen for the viewer for digest. There is no typical story or plot, you are just taken through a character’s whole journey. Because of this lack of typical plot (which would mean the viewer pays more attention to that than the character) you feel like you know the characters and are living and feeling their lives along with them. The emotional journey is intense in this film and brings you to immense sadness and pain but also to many moments of pure happiness and joy.  The film shows that family is messy and chaotic but incredibly loving. The mess and chaos is merely a part of life that you must learn to appreciate. Cuarón also shows that family is not just blood, it can be whomever becomes an integral and important person in your life (like how Cleo is integral in the families life)

Roma | Directed by Alfonso Cuarón | 2018 | Drama | 2h 15m is available to watch on Netflix

Roma Feature film image

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