Cinema Mishmash

A personal and random look at movies, past and present

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Under the Same Moon

January 26th, 2009 · 1 Comment

Under the Same MoonWith a title like Under the Same Moon and a story about a nine-year-old Mexican boy who longs to be reunited with his mother (who crossed the border four years ago in order to send money back to support him), one might expect to grab a hanky and be taken on an emotional ride. And while the hanky is certainly recommended, the filmmakers here have accomplished that rare cinematic gift of a story told without excess sentiment. Director Patricia Riggen and screenwriter Ligiah Villalobos apparently spent over a year honing the script of this simple tale, and their dedication and craft have brought to life a world of real human characters expressing themselves with the lightest touches of real human emotion.

The young Adrian Alonso is a real marvel as the tireless Carlitos, as is his unexpected guardian, Eugenio Derbez. No single film can hope to tackle the issue of US immigration policy, and this film doesn’t seek to do so. It personalizes the problem, though, and reminds us, sitting in our comfortable seats, of how much we take for granted. Like decent subtitling, for example. (The DVD’s English subtitling includes the audio clues for the hearing impaired, which, I’m sorry, is an unnecessary distraction for the able-eared.) And yes,  the fact that I just complained about the indignity of tolerating an unwanted “[gasp]” across my home theater screen after watching a film depicting the very real phenomenon of people risking their lives to cross the border and work demeaning jobs makes me a true citizen of our decadent society. Alas.

Tags: Capsule · Drama · Family · Foreign Language

1 response so far ↓

  • 1 Dave // Jul 25, 2009 at 6:29 pm

    Great blog! Hey, I think I know this guy!

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