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Beauty vs Beast: Who's the Boss

Happy Monday, Jason from MNPP here with this week's "Beauty vs Beast" poll -- this week we're tackling the two Oscar-moninated performances at the heart of my favorite film of 2018, Alfonso Cuarón's ROMA. Yalitza Aparicio is Cleo, whose pregnancy via local ne'er-do-well charts the course of the film; Marina de Tavira plays Senora Sofia, Cleo's boss whose own relationship is faltering. Two women ghosted, but which is your tops?


PREVIOUSLY Rachel Weisz won a BAFTA yesterday for The Favourite but even more importantly today she officially won last week's Disobedience poll against her fellow Rachel, McAdams -- might as well toss that BAFTA in the trash, Rach! Said David S:

"Rachel Weisz... love her forever, and I never foresaw her career picking up now instead of ten years ago. I love how proud she is of the love scene, which is one of the best and most specific I've ever seen. I would nominate her for Best Actress and Best Supporting this year, if I had the power! The performance even improves on the second viewing. So does McAdams's. It's all just very subtle... I noticed on Letterboxd that almost no one I follow actually saw this. I hope it gets more viewers over time."

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Reader Comments (11)

Team Cleo: I am always going to side for the working people, first and foremost.

February 11, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterRob

DeTavira she is not who you think she is by the films end,found Cleo a bit blank.

February 11, 2019 | Unregistered Commentermarkgordonuk

@markgordonuk: I totally agree but I think Cleo is intentionally a bit blank, kind of a blank slate of a person, at least on the outside.

February 11, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterRob

I'm totally team Marina de Tavira. Discovery of the year.

February 11, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterPeggy Sue

Sofia is moody but ultimately more interesting. I'd much rather have a conversation with her if I knew Spanish. And she's clearly the boss. Literally.

February 11, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterBruno

I'm voting for Sofia. I'm so glad you put this picture up from the movie. That scene sealed the deal for me that de Tavira earned her nomination. There is so much multitasking that she is doing in that scene it just left me breathless.

February 11, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterThomas Glessner

I am hoping she wins,cos all the fuss about Regina soured me once I saw her in it,she's a bit hopeless in that mini movie she gets,I got nothing from that hair in the mirror scene or any depth when dealing with the runaway victim.

February 11, 2019 | Unregistered Commentermarkgordonuk

To understand Cleo's character is necessary to not only understand existing at the margins of society but to be familiar with what it is like to exist at the margins of a household: being intimate without having a voice or autonomy. To people unfamiliar with these class structures and Mexican indigenous people this could read as blank but reflect again. Cleo is an underage indigenous woman that was brought into a family to work as maid/nanny (in Mexico, it's the whole package) and who is herself just discovering who is she against the environment where she is placed. Indigenous people from Mexico are generally very humble people, and I remember my maid being just like Cleo; shy, soft-spoken, being there 24/7 and accepting her as "part of the family" without really getting to know her or her wants and desires and life experiences. It's an unbalanced equation of intimacy and I think Cleo (and Yalitza's work) represents this faithfully and without unnecessary drama.

For many Mexicans, Roma has been a song to the disenfranchised in our country and culture. To those abandoning their rich ethnic identity and families in order to work with alien families and pursue an unreachable "better life" in the disconnected cities.

February 11, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterJones

Sofia and her story are much more interesting than Cleo who is sweet but that's about it.
@Jones thanks for the insight- but I did not get that from "Roma"

February 11, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterJaragon

I agree with Jaragon. What Jones wrote is interesting and may well be the intention of Cuaron, but the fact is that Cleo is a character without any agency and thus quite difficult to care about. Easily the worst thing about the movie (the characterization, not the actress).

February 12, 2019 | Unregistered Commenterkin

So agree @kin & @Jaragon - incredible cinematography but I don't want a moving backstory behind the scenes to get me closer to a movie - Roma left me absolutely aloof - (can anyone remember the faces of the kids - why is it called a deeply humanitarian story if there is nothing in the story that connects or moves you at all ?) - honestly I couldn't care less about the characters. After 1.5 hours ... I had the first real look at Cleo's face a bit closer (as she's cleaning or running most of the time) - and she's only reacting ... in all her 5 close ups - she's staring out of a window or hating something ... Yes Cuaron is fantastic how he captured that - BUT a nominee of the most acclaimed acting prices in the world ! I'm in shock ! Team: why is everybody jumping on one bandwagoon ?

February 14, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterMartin

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