Gloria Bell: Review by @Kush_Hayes
Gloria Bell is in the middle of her Third Life and still trying to figure it all out and keep her smile as life continues to throw bizarre obstacles in her way. By Third Life, I mean that shes no longer a child, and now her kids either have kids or are having kids. Shes been divorced for over a decade and while not necessarily lonely, she is alone. She has her career. After work she goes to “mixers” where most of the people there seem to just be occupying space. She balances time between having lunch with her own mother and then trying to see her kids who barely have time to balance having lunch with her. Its definitely a cycle that we see as a theme a few times. And one message in it is that no matter how old she gets, Mom will always be Mom and trying to look out for her child regardless if they’re 25 or 59. And then we get into the whole John Turturro story line.
Gloria Bell is the second movie in 2019 to be remade from a foreign film by the original director. While its nothing new overall, I find it to be a fun detail thats on pace to becoming a trend in Hollywood. Right now its just a coincidence. However per the Media Kit I was given, it was Julianne Moore who was able to convince Sebastián Lelio to remake “Gloria”, his 2013 Chilean feature upon their first meeting in Paris during a private event.
Julianne Moore is not only the title character, but as you can guess from the mention above was the Spearhead behind getting this adaptation made. I haven’t seen the original “Gloria”, in fact if you know me this movie is out of my element, but Im happy to write, Julianne Moore is delightful in this. Her character at no point is pathetic, but shes not necessarily Super Mom either. There are times when as an adult, as a mom, she can only sit back and watch the car crash that is in front of her, such as in once case, her Sons marriage. You see the frustration she goes through during times like this you feel for her in addition to the situation before her. And even with stressful things like this she fights back to keep her smile as she assess the situation and how to go about navigating through it.
And then John Turturro comes into the movie…
John Turturro is the films love interest and as a character is the films biggest disappointment, and thats how good Turturro plays him. The backstory on the character briefly is that hes also a divorcee who owns his own business and thanks to modern surgery was once an obese person. Despite Turturro not gaining or losing any weight for this role, to my knowledge, he still plays the man with the insecurity complex due to a weight issue. You are rooting for him during the movie until their relationship gets to the point where even you are agreeing with Gloria Bell for pulling the phone out of the wall and dismissing him.
Tangent: Film and TV characters who still have Landline Phones, the phone unplugs from both sides. Yes! Its much more dramatic ripping the cord from the wall, but then you have to repair the jack eventually. Just unplug it from the base of the phone.
Other performances in this are great including Michael Cera as Glorias son, who is dealing with not only a newborn child but a wife who happens to have abandoned them both. As much as his mom wants to help, she cant, and as much as he doesnt want to disrespect his mother, he wants to roll his eyes everytime she offers him that motherly advice that cant really suppress the stress of the situation as mentioned above.
Gloria Bell was incredibly delightful and I would recommend many people I know to see it. I think the character is supposed to be more ordinary than extraordinary, but shes going to keep trying and thats all most of any of us can do.
Four out of Six Blueberries