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I'm afraid I'm too much of a Philistine to understand this movie. Looked like a student film from NYU.

 

I'm from a time when movies like Lawrence of Arabia, Gandhi, Chariots of Fire, were "Best" Picture quality movies. I have no idea what happened? Then again I did not get Moonlight either, or how it could possibly be a "Best" Picture.

 

R,

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I'm afraid I'm too much of a Philistine to understand this movie. Looked like a student film from NYU.

 

I'm from a time when movies like Lawrence of Arabia, Gandhi, Chariots of Fire, were "Best" Picture quality movies. I have no idea what happened? Then again I did not get Moonlight either, or how it could possibly be a "Best" Picture.

 

R,

I find it interesting that you list those particular movies Richard, because Lawrence and Ghandi are precisely the kind of sweeping epics that I thought Roma wonderfully evoked.

 

I'd put it up there in that same pantheon. It felt to me like it had been years since I'd seen the sort of scope that Roma laid out so beautifully.

 

It was easily my top film of the year (that said, the competition was notably weak this year).

 

 

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I think The Favourite should have got it.. doing something different .. would have been so easy to go the classic Elizabethan period piece way.. long lens..candles and nets.. but they chose a path to compliment the story.. I shall be lodging my complaint with the academy .. heads will roll..

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"...it could not be a nostalgic, old look black and white..." I think his opening statement should be taken with a pinch of salt haha I think what Tyler says is probably true.....

Edited by Stephen Perera

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Perhaps the biggest deal is the lighting cameraman taking the direction Oscar as well. I haven't checked, but that must be a first. Although he already has a director/editor duo.

Edit: and best foreign language film.

Three Oscars for the same person in the same year has to be unique.

Edited by Mark Dunn

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Perhaps the biggest deal is the lighting cameraman taking the direction Oscar as well. I haven't checked, but that must be a first. Although he already has a director/editor duo.

Edit: and best foreign language film.

Three Oscars for the same person in the same year has to be unique.

 

 

In the past I guess all the big features were union shoots .. US or Europe and the Dir couldn't be the DoP even if he wanted to.. but could have a big influence over the cameras ,lens etc.. like Kubrick.. equally Im sure there were quite a few instances of an experienced DoP basically directing a film..

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...a friend of mine says it was easy for him to win cinematography cos he had experts operating the camera, experts pulling focus, experts rigging, experts lighting...em...I could not argue back

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I find it interesting that you list those particular movies Richard, because Lawrence and Ghandi are precisely the kind of sweeping epics that I thought Roma wonderfully evoked.

 

I'd put it up there in that same pantheon. It felt to me like it had been years since I'd seen the sort of scope that Roma laid out so beautifully.

 

It was easily my top film of the year (that said, the competition was notably weak this year).

 

 

 

Uh, ok, like I said, I'm a Philistine on this one, film criticism at this level is beyond me. You say it evoked,"Lawrence and Ghandi", Hmmmm, geeez, I missed that big time!

 

R,

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I really didn't like Roma. It essentially was a year or so in the life of a nanny/housekeeper working for fairly well to do professionals and their children, in a very nice townhouse. I thought this film could have been made in any city, Brooklyn, Beverly Hills, Paris, just as well as Mexico City and at any time period in the past 50 years. It's basically a story of two women, a nanny and the lady of the house who get abandoned by their men and survive as a family unit with the kids. The characters were kind of flat, I never felt like I got to know them. They were almost stereotypes. I have no real individual impressions of the kids either.

 

Nothing grand or earth shaking as the hype would have you believe. The protests and violence looked good in the trailers but seemed to be there for shock value in just a few scenes, an interruption in the story rather than a part of it.

 

I wasn't overly impressed with the cinematography either. As a fan of classic black and white movies of the 30's and 40's I enjoy the high contrast black and white of those movies. The black and white in Roma looked sort of faded to me.

 

Uh, ok, like I said, I'm a Philistine on this one, film criticism at this level is beyond me. You say it evoked,"Lawrence and Ghandi", Hmmmm, geeez, I missed that big time!

 

R,

Edited by Bob Speziale

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I find it interesting that you list those particular movies Richard, because Lawrence and Ghandi are precisely the kind of sweeping epics that I thought Roma wonderfully evoked.

 

I'd put it up there in that same pantheon. It felt to me like it had been years since I'd seen the sort of scope that Roma laid out so beautifully.

 

It was easily my top film of the year (that said, the competition was notably weak this year).

 

 

 

Uh, ok, like I said, I'm a Philistine on this one, film criticism at this level is beyond me. You say it evoked,"Lawrence and Ghandi", Hmmmm, geeez, I missed that big time!

 

R,

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I thought this film could have been made in any city, Brooklyn, Beverly Hills, Paris, just as well as Mexico City and at any time period in the past 50 years.

Sure, but name a top filmmaker whose mother was house maid. The point of the film was telling the true story of Cuaron's mothers past, which had many very interesting elements to it. Sure the story could have been told from a different location or perspective, but Mexico is a very poor place. So part of the intrigue was simply how they all coped.

 

The characters were kind of flat, I never felt like I got to know them.

Yea, but I feel that way with any foreign language film. Unless there is a great deal of character exposition, it's really hard to get the very subtle nuances in the dialog to really fully understand the character unless you're fluent in the native language. I don't blame the filmmakers for this, there is PLENTY of character exposition in Roma.

 

The protests and violence looked good in the trailers but seemed to be there for shock value in just a few scenes, an interruption in the story rather than a part of it.

Well yea, the story wasn't about the protestors, the story was about her being pregnant and about to have a baby during a very difficult time period. The funny part is that the guy who knocked her up was part of the protest.

 

I wasn't overly impressed with the cinematography either. As a fan of classic black and white movies of the 30's and 40's I enjoy the high contrast black and white of those movies. The black and white in Roma looked sort of faded to me.

The reason why the classic movies have contrast is because of the lighting. Roma was basically lit with natural lighting. It's not suppose to in any way look like a studio film from the 40's with high contrast lighting. It's suppose to look like something shot in the 60's and 70's with a more flat image.

 

Roma was an amazingly well shot film. Everything was so beautiful and the blocking was impeccable. The reason why people don't normally do long takes like Roma is because it's so much more difficult. It's way easier to do a wide, medium and close up because when people make mistakes, you can just cut to a different angle. Not with Roma, he risked it all and did super long single takes which were amazing. This style of cinematography may be boring, but it works so well. As a professional cinematographer and editor, I was envious of what he got away with. I know many people who have tried that style and didn't get away with it. The dedication is commendable from both the director and studio to allow him the opportunity to make such a masterpiece.

 

Where I surely feel there could have been more excitement to the film, I don't dismiss the artistic side of things. It really is an art film at it's core.

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Sure, but name a top filmmaker whose mother was house maid. The point of the film was telling the true story of Cuaron's mothers past, which had many very interesting elements to it. Sure the story could have been told from a different location or perspective, but Mexico is a very poor place. So part of the intrigue was simply how they all coped.

 

 

Yea, but I feel that way with any foreign language film. Unless there is a great deal of character exposition, it's really hard to get the very subtle nuances in the dialog to really fully understand the character unless you're fluent in the native language. I don't blame the filmmakers for this, there is PLENTY of character exposition in Roma.

 

 

Well yea, the story wasn't about the protestors, the story was about her being pregnant and about to have a baby during a very difficult time period. The funny part is that the guy who knocked her up was part of the protest.

 

 

The reason why the classic movies have contrast is because of the lighting. Roma was basically lit with natural lighting. It's not suppose to in any way look like a studio film from the 40's with high contrast lighting. It's suppose to look like something shot in the 60's and 70's with a more flat image.

 

Roma was an amazingly well shot film. Everything was so beautiful and the blocking was impeccable. The reason why people don't normally do long takes like Roma is because it's so much more difficult. It's way easier to do a wide, medium and close up because when people make mistakes, you can just cut to a different angle. Not with Roma, he risked it all and did super long single takes which were amazing. This style of cinematography may be boring, but it works so well. As a professional cinematographer and editor, I was envious of what he got away with. I know many people who have tried that style and didn't get away with it. The dedication is commendable from both the director and studio to allow him the opportunity to make such a masterpiece.

 

Where I surely feel there could have been more excitement to the film, I don't dismiss the artistic side of things. It really is an art film at it's core.

 

Tyler, Roma is not about Cuaron's mother and his mother wasn't a house maid as you suggest on your post, it is about Cleo, his nanny (whose real name is Libo)

Cuaron's mother was the woman married to the doctor (Sofía, whose real name is Cristina) and Cuarón himself is Paco. ;)

 

Have a lovely day!

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Uh, ok, like I said, I'm a Philistine on this one, film criticism at this level is beyond me. You say it evoked,"Lawrence and Ghandi", Hmmmm, geeez, I missed that big time!

 

R,

The perils of beauty being decided by each beholders' eye I suppose!

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The perils of beauty being decided by each beholders' eye I suppose!

 

 

One mans poison is another mans fish... as we used to say at Miss Cornells Academy of Filmic Arts.. in Geneva ..

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One mans poison is another mans fish... as we used to say at Miss Cornells Academy of Filmic Arts.. in Geneva ..

You should have paid more attention to goldfish polishing rather than wasting all that time in hamster lessons.

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You should have paid more attention to goldfish polishing rather than wasting all that time in hamster lessons.

 

 

Best kept Hamster is no small achievement I can assure you sir.. I was also head ink monitor..many of the foreign students couldn't be trusted .. a keen and bright student who often caught the eye of Miss Cornell herself..

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a keen and bright student who often caught the eye of Miss Cornell herself..

I think there's a special glue to keep them in now.

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Just to way in here for no good reason :)

 

Richard, I agree. It's not Lawrence of Arabia!

 

But, it's still a very good film, beautifully shot, staged, art directed. I think the style of the lighting and photography was a perfect match for this story.

Perhaps some of the symbolism and imagery was a bit of a stretch, trying to emulate Malick or even Tarkovsky. But I've often found symbolism a weak way to make a point in a story. It's too intellectual and lacks genuine emotion for me.

 

All said though, a very good film, well made.

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Richard, I agree. It's not Lawrence of Arabia!

 

 

I'm sure it was never intended to be. But that's still my view of what a "Best Picture" looks like. I have no idea when a Best Picture became a small scale drama driven by whatever oppressed group was the flavour of the month.

 

R,

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Tyler, Roma is not about Cuaron's mother and his mother wasn't a house maid as you suggest on your post, it is about Cleo, his nanny (whose real name is Libo)

Cuaron's mother was the woman married to the doctor (Sofía, whose real name is Cristina) and Cuarón himself is Paco. ;)

HA whoops lol

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I do find it hysterical that the US Oscars now resemble the Canadian version, the CSAs. People watch the CSAs and no one has ever heard of, or seen, any of the titles nominated for Best Picture. In the old days, the 1980s, when you watched the Oscars, everyone had heard of the films nominated in the Best Picture category.

 

These days, so many of the films nominated in the Best Picture category at the Oscars are art house movies, unknown to the general public. Congratulations America, you have caught up to the cinema snobs living North of the border.

 

R,

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I watched this film in 2 chunks. I got so bored with it after 1 hour 40 minutes, I turned it off. I ended up watching the end half a week later. It was beautifully shot, but a very dull boring movie. I guess I have been spoiled by Speilberg movies all my life. The directing was well done, as was the acting. So I'll give credit due where I believe it should. I kept waiting for something to happen to liven up the movie, but that didn't really happen till near the end. And even that wasn't so dramatic when you think of it. I like my B&W to be more contrasty too, but I'll accept his choice as a stylistic choice. This is one film I don't plan to watch again. And movies with no plot or story I like too, like Baraka for example. But this one wasn't it for me.

Edited by Scott Pickering

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