GLORIA Movie Review
GLORIA takes place in Santiago, Chile when the citizens are crying out for their rights to be recognized. The city is similar to the main character, Gloria.
Gloria is a woman who maybe once found her place in life as a mother and wife but 12 years after her divorce and her children have grown, she finds herself looking for a purpose and possibly new love in life. She frequents the social dance clubs at night to dance and have fun with other single adults. This self-supporting woman is both funny and whole-hearted. Her story is the same.
Gloria stands by her son who is a single father but doesn’t seem to quite be the support he is looking for. She desires to have close relationship with her daughter but her daughter is ready to leave her current life and start a new one in another country with the father of her baby.
With no immediate responsibilities as a mother and no husband, where does that leave Gloria? The audience can feel her loneliness as the movie is directed so that we can almost be in her skin.
Gloria soon meets Rodolfo who seems to be a nice fit for a new romance until it is revealed that Rodolfo cannot distance himself from his overly dependent adult daughters and ex-wife. Gloria opens herself up to Rodolfo and invites him to be a part of her life only to be let down and literally abandoned by him.
Choosing not to let someone else’s actions define her self-worth, Gloria chooses to move on. The audience realizes that this bump in the road otherwise known as Rodolfo is just that a bump in the road on her journey of life. Gloria is sure to let Rodolfo know that, too.
The movie concludes with the song “Gloria” (in Spanish) playing at the wedding of her friend’s daughter. The Spanish version of the 1982 Laura Branigan song translates more about the greatness of Gloria and how it (she) seems to be missing but is still desired. Once again Gloria begins to dance to a song about her namesake slowly regaining her groove and we see that she has still has hope.
GLORIA is in Spanish with English subtitles. The storyline and acting will capture your interest and keep it as you wonder what could happen to Gloria to cause her to just give up? I was waiting for her to just throw in the towel. It is refreshing to see a movie about a woman ‘of a certain age’ be the heroine of her own life and story. It's funny, hear felt and entertaining. (There's nudity, tastefully done. It's not an American made film, y'all.)
GLORIA stars Chilean actress, Paulina Garcia who was awarded Best Actress in the Berlin Film Festival. Paulina is simply great in GLORIA. The director, Sebastián Lelio, recently was distinguished with the Guggenheim Fellowship and received the support of DAAD Berliner Künstlerprogramm for the development of his new projects. It opens in select theaters February 8, 2014.