Latino Masala!


And Your Mother Too (Y Tu Mama Tambien)
Year: 2001
Language: Spanish
Director: Alfonso Cuaron
Cast: Gael Garcia Bernal, Diego Luna, Maribel Verdu

This movie is what is known as a coming-of-age movie. Well, for the theme of the movie as well as for the viewer! This is a movie about two teenage boys and their skirmishes with their sexuality. Tenoch (Luna) and Julio (Gael Garcia) are best friends who spend their days together, drinking and whiling away their time, wondering about what to study in University. Tenoch comes from a wealthy family, the son of a politician and the movie is set against the backdrop of some troublesome times in Mexican politics. Julio is from a much less affluent family but these differences seem to be bridged by their mutual love of, and obsession with girls, women, sex, alcohol and drugs (coming-of-age indeed).

The movie opens with a sex scene, which makes us realise why it had trouble with rating certificates in many countries. The boys’ girlfriends, Cecie and Ana are off on a trip to Italy for the summer and they bid them their not-so tearful goodbyes. They claim to be committed to their girlfriends but their desires and ambitious plans on who to sleep with for the summer make us rethink that…as does the whole movie! They attend a political luncheon organised by Tenoch’s dad and here they meet Luisa, Tenoch’s cousin Jano’s wife. They are immediately taken by her and through various bumbling, embarrassing attempts at flirting with her, invite her on a road trip to a fictional beach in rural Mexico!

Meanwhile, Luisa (Verdu) who is in her late twenties is going through a personal crisis – her husband has confessed to cheating on her. She is devastated and calls up Tenoch to take them up on their offer. And therein starts of the road trip of their lives – one that is about nothing and everything, and one that changes their lives forever. I call this movie coming-of-age for the viewer, especially for the Indian viewer simply because it is unabashed about its explorations of sex, sexuality, desire and lust. Very little is left to the imagination and there is very little left to shock the viewer. This movie is as raw and as real as it gets. As you might have expected – Luisa sleeps with both boys, albeit in sordid, awkward encounters. The boys discuss their various sexual experiences with her and she speaks wistfully of her first boyfriend and of her husband. But one drunken night, everything changes for them. The boys confess that they have each slept with the other’s girlfriends! And Luisa, Tenoch and Julio have a threesome. I think I have said enough. Watch this movie to know the meaning behind the title.

Verdict: Unabashed and real. Considered controversial for the themes it explores.
Rating: 3.5stars
Hot: Makes you think about those things that we shy away from talking about
Not: Could be too raw and bare-naked for some