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Roma

✭ ✭ ✭ ✭ ✭   Read critic reviews

Mexico, USA

2018

Rated R • 2h 15m

Director Alfonso Cuarón

Starring Yalitza Aparicio, Marina de Tavira, Diego Cortina Autrey, Carlos Peralta

Genre Drama

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In turbulent 1970s Mexico City, quiet domestic worker Cleo assists Sofia, a wealthy mother of four, while her husband is away for an extended period of time. As Sofia struggles to hold her family together, Cleo silently struggles with problems of her own—boys, money, love—all while acting as a surrogate mother for Sofia’s children.

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WHAT ARE PEOPLE SAYING?

Melanie Greenberg Profile picture for Melanie Greenberg

This is so meticulously crafted, every shot feels carefully thought out. A beautiful intertwining of art and memory!

Teddy Pierce Profile picture for Teddy Pierce

As visually stunning as this film is, its true innovation lies in its 360 degree sound design. Coupled with a camera that often places the viewer as a silent watcher in the middle of the three-dimensional space, spinning quietly around to take in a room or a scene, the Dolby Atmos sound design similarly works to place the viewer within the three dimensional space, the sound shifting and changing locations as the camera spins.

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WHAT ARE CRITICS SAYING?

92

TheWrap by Alonso Duralde

Alfonso Cuarón has created a heartfelt masterpiece of mood and nostalgia, one that reminds us that his gifts as a storyteller and an interpreter of the human experience are not dictated by scale of production.
100

IndieWire by Eric Kohn

Roma is by far the most experimental storytelling in a career filled with audacious (and frequently excessive) gimmicks. Here, he tables the showiness of “Children of Men” and “Gravity” in favor of ongoing restraint, creating a fresh kind of intimacy. Like a grand showman working overtime to tone things down, he lures viewers into an apparently straightforward scene, only to catch them off guard with new information.
91

The Playlist by Jessica Kiang

This is personal filmmaking taken to such an extremely minute level that at times it can almost feel prurient, like we’re accidentally eavesdropping on things too private for our ears, like we’ve intercepted an embrace sent back through time and not really meant for us at all.
80

CineVue by John Bleasdale

Alfonso Cuarón returns to his childhood for inspiration with the meticulously beautiful Roma, an autobiographical black and white thank you letter full of warmth and love.
70

Variety by Owen Gleiberman

Roma is no mere movie — it’s a vision, a memory play that unfolds with a gritty and virtuosic time-machine austerity. It’s a Proustian reverie, dreamed and designed down to the last street corner and scuffed piece of furniture. Yet I actually think it’s far from a masterpiece, because as a viewing experience it has a slightly hermetic coffee-table-book purity. Every moment comes at you in the same methodically objective and caressing Zen way.
100

The Guardian by Peter Bradshaw

At times it feels novelistic, a densely realised, intimate drama giving us access to domestic lives developing in what feels like real time. In its engagingly episodic way, it is also at times like a soap opera or telenovela. And at other times it feels resoundingly like an epic.
100

Time by Stephanie Zacharek

This glorious, tender picture, a memoir written in film language, is only indirectly about the man who made it. He stands off to the side, in the shadows, beckoning us toward something. Roma is filmmaking as gesture, an invitation to generosity that we perhaps didn’t know we could feel.
100

The Hollywood Reporter by Todd McCarthy

Roma may not be the memoir film many might have expected from such an adventurous, sometimes raunchy, sci-fi/fantasy-oriented filmmaker, but it’s absolutely fresh, confident, surprising and rapturously beautiful.

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