Roma : Alfonso Cuarón’s Masterpiece of Memory

I can not wait to see this film, Roma by Alfonso Cuaron it looks wonderful. In fact the imagery and framing kept reminding me of one of my favourite still photographer’s
Sebastião Salgado.

I spent weeks wondering the streets of Roma during a holiday a few years back, so maybe thats why it felt familiar. It screens on Netflix in December. I’m hoping it also gets a screening at somewhere like Dendy, worthy of a big screen.

This is the Review from NYT

In “Roma,” the Mexican director Alfonso Cuarón uses a large canvas to tell the story of lives that some might think small. A personal epic set in Mexico City in the early 1970s, it centers on a young indigenous woman who works as a maid for a middle-class white family that’s falling apart. Cuarón uses one household on one street to open up a world, working on a panoramic scale often reserved for war stories, but with the sensibility of a personal diarist. It’s an expansive, emotional portrait of life buffeted by violent forces, and a masterpiece.

Few directors tell large-scale stories with as much sensitivity as Cuarón, whose filmmaking style has grown more exhilarating as the expressive realism of his breakout movie, “Y Tu Mamá También,” has been channeled into the restrained ostentation of his fantasies “Children of Men” and “Gravity.” In “Roma” he has further refined his style by marshaling various narrative strategies, including cinematic spectacle. Many directors use spectacle to convey larger-than-life events while reserving devices like close-ups to express a character’s inner being. Here, Cuarón uses both intimacy and monumentality to express the depths of ordinary life.

“Roma” shares its name with a neighborhood in Mexico City where families live behind locked gates, and where maids, cooks and drivers busily keep homes running. In one such house, Cleo (the newcomer Yalitza Aparicio) lives with and works for a multigenerational brood that scarcely seems capable of doing anything without her. In the morning, she wakes the children; at night, she puts them to bed. From each dawn and until long after dusk, she tends to the family and its sprawling two-story house. She serves meals, cleans away dog droppings and carries laundry up to the roof, where she does the wash in view of other maids on other roofs with their own heavy loads.

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