The characterisations are spot-on in this intelligent road movie and from the off set you are either gonna like it or hate it. Luna and Bernal clearly have a wail of a time, as they are best friends in real life, as such the chemistry is clear to observe. The pacing is fast, the conversations faster and the opening scene features an arse bobbing up and down in youthful coitus. In less assured hands (Cuaron also writes) this could easily have descended in to an uneasy sex farce with nothing new or original to say as it is this a heart warming, deeply moving tale of friendship, puberty, sex, trust and mothers.
In terms of cinematography again Cuaron excels; crisp flurried movement, detailing city/landscapes with vistas and confident use of contrast. The irreverent plot lines and genius narrative offset against these visuals are delightful and juxtapose the realism with fairytale diversions offering, at times, a biting social commentary.
The trio of would be 'life evacuees' revel in a script of an unparalleled sense of fun, mischief and sincerity - the insults, trade off's and counter arguments are exchanged in scatter shot perfection. Luna and Bernal are outstanding and Verdu smoulders suitably, the epitome of femme fatale who may, just may tear the boys apart and break their code forever.
Cuaron masks a dark tale behind light moments of human observation and pointed humour. The existential angst and the pseudo link for travel and growing up is set within an exuberant balance of emotion (watch out for the not so hidden subtext). The end message is particularly poignant and endures even the most hardened filmgoers to examine his or her childhood experiences...
Teenage sexoholics Julio and Tenoch desperately attempt to seduce older woman Luisa with a promise of a road trip to a mythical beach called Heaven's Mouth. On the way, the three compadres discover hatred, jealousy, love and alienation. And they have lots and lots of sex.
This is an incredibly sexy film in every way. Cuaron lingers over the young and beautiful stars without being perverse, allowing us to appreciate the positive and negative aspects of particularly Julio and Tenoch. Mexico is similarly revealed to us during their road trip, warts and all, violence and crime as much a part of their trip as the breathtaking scenery. The characters they meet shape their journey, and soon the audience is involved, willingly or not, in the events of the holiday.
This film is funny, smart, sensual and exotic. But above all, it is beautiful, and though the characters may seem repellent from the outset, by the time I reached the achingly poignant final meeting of Tenoch and Julio I had fallen in love, in different ways, with all three characters.
This film also provides a wonderful insight into Gael Garcia Bernal's rising talent.
I thoroughy recommend Y Tu Mama Tambien. Just don't watch it with your parents!
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