While on a trip to Thailand, a successful American businessman tries to radically change his life. Back in New York, his wife and daughter find their relationship with their live-in Filipino maid changing around them. At the same time, in the Philippines, the maid's family struggles to deal with her absence.
Gael García Bernal,
A motiveless malignancy? Elvis leaves the Navy and heads for Texas where he contacts his father, whom he's never met, the pastor at a Christian community church. Pastor Dave tells Elvis to stay away and, without telling his family that Elvis is his son from a pre-conversion liaison, tells them to have nothing to do with him. But Elvis has already connected with Malerie, the pastor's 16-year old daughter. Elvis embarks on the seduction of Malerie, while Dave examines his conscience and comes to a new conclusion. Can anyone get right with the Lord? Does the Lord hear? Written by
The boom mic is visible When Paul confronts Elvis at Elvis' residence. The boom mic drops into frame for a moment whilst the camera is on Paul. See more »
"La negra tiburcia"
Written and Performed by Graciela Palafox
Used by permission of Katie Kelley Music (ASCAP)
Courtesy of Rampart Latino Gordo Enterprises
By Arrangement with Sony BMG Music Licensing See more »
I loved this film. It has an ingenious plot with several more or less unexpected twists. Religion and guilt are major themes in the film; themes that I felt were examined with a seldomly seen open mindedness. The acting is strong from all characters, and the portrait of the characters adds realism to the story as they are portrayed in a very down-to-earth, human way. I felt I could identify with all the characters (religious beliefs apart) in the film. I also think it succeeds in executing what I gather was one of its resolutions; telling the story of a terrible event without passing too much judgment.
The performance of Gael Garcia Bernal is solid and that of Pell James wonderful. In my opinion the two played really well together, as did William Hurt and Gael Garcia Bernal. I went ahead and watched this film without knowing anything in beforehand (I went to the cinema and chose a name from the list) which I think was appropriate for this type of film. Having known a lot in beforehand could perhaps have made it more predictable and less good. The film is interesting also in the fact that scenes depicting what in reality would be very morbid are made beautiful, a fact that pulls the viewer into the lovely high where beautiful film-making makes you want to be a writer yourself. This is not something you'll want to miss out on!
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