Sunday, April 10, 2011

Maria Full of Grace (4)



(Watch the Trailer)

2004 Colombian drama/thriller by Joshua Marston.

A 17 year old girl gets pregnant and decides to keep the baby but she wants to be able to support the child herself. She tries finding work but there is nothing. The only other option is to be a mule: to use her body to carry packets of drugs into the United States. What would you do to create a better life for your unborn child?

This was on my "movies to watch" list for a long time now and I'm glad I got around to watching it.

This movie had a constant flow and intensity that I haven't seen in a long time. Right from the start things are intense and, it's not like it keeps building, but rather it stayed constantly throughout the entire film...right until the end. There was a bit of a climax but it didn't last long. It was almost like this film had several peak moments and then would go right back into being intense and making you full of suspense just as much as you were before the peak. It doesn't let you go. I liked that, it seemed more believable that way. Life doesn't truck along and slowly build up to one singular moment and then it's all smooth sailing after that.

I enjoyed how they kept that fine balance between story and characters. The entire time I wanted to know more about Maria but I never got it and although at the time I was frustrated, after the movie was over I realized that they never faltered from the plot and that was why I was so engrossed in the entire film. Once I started watching, I was in it. If they had spent even an extra 2 minutes on certain scenes or took the time to explain any of the technicalities the story would have lost some of it's power. Really well done, really good.

Characters were awesome, Catalina Sandino Moreno was fantastic, and the story was horrifying and so well written. This movie isn't for the light of heart...that's about all I'll say about that. It's a drama but it's also a thriller and a crime movie and they don't hold back.

If you love a solid story with some remarkable characters and can handle some dark material I highly suggest watching this film.

4/5



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