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And Your Mother Too

Alfonso Cuaron

Y tu mama tambien

Now here’s a film with something for everyone. Leaving behind the sculpted pictorialism of his Hollywood work (‘A Little Princess’, ‘Great Expectations’), director Alfonso Cuar’n returned to his native Mexico to shoot this road movie fast and loose. A monster hit at home, it’s a raucous and raunchy affair as two layabout pals from Mexico City (Diego Luna and ‘Amores Perros’ star Gabriel Garcia Bernal) start out on a long drive to a mythical beach, accompanied by an unhappily married older Spanish woman (Maribel Verdu) on whom they both have amorous designs. With its salty dialogue, unabashed sex and nudity, and comically developing jealousies, the movie delivers all the accessible pleasures of a smarter, sharper Hollywood teen flick, but the fun certainly doesn’t stop there.
While the incisive voiceover adds pointed little nuggets of socio-political wisdom in an acknowledged nod to mid-’60s Godard, the joyously spontaneous-looking shooting style and outline resemblance to Truffaut’s ‘Jules Et Jim’ means Cuar’n’s film recalls the freshness of the French New Wave without falling into empty pastiche. Still, there’s more to enjoy. If you can take your eyes off the wonderfully natural performances and bronzed bodies for a moment, you’ll pick up a lot about the cultural changes filtering through Mexican society after the landmark recent elections which ended the Institutional Revolutionary Party’s 71-year rule. Like ‘Amores Perros’, ‘And Your mother Too’ shows a nation coming to terms with itself, warts and all, as Cuar’n’s camera picks out gaping social divisions and the insidious presence of the military, and undercuts macho sexual values. It’s one for the head, the heart and the cojones.

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