If you’re in New York you are probably freezing your bolas off. In L.A., not so much. Either way, if you want to avoid the cold (or the heat) there are two Latin American movies opening in theaters this weekend. Gloria, the much-raved about fourth film from Chilean director Sebastian Lelio, stars Paulina Garcia in a dazzling and dynamic performance as a middle-aged divorcee. For you music documentary fans comes Mercedes Sosa: The Voice of Latin America an intimate portrait tracing Mercedes Sosa’s forty year career as a folk singer from her start in Argentina to her tours around the globe.
Director: Sebastian Lelio
It’s hard not to feel sorry for Gloria at times. She is clearly very lonely. She’s divorced, works a boring office job, and her children are grown and too busy to return her calls let alone spend time with her. She finds solace at a nightclub, drinking and dancing the night away. On one of these outings she meets Rodolfo, also newly divorced. He’s nervous around her, fumbling his words but asks her to dance. Then he asks her out on a date. Quickly, Rodolfo falls hard for Gloria. She seems to be smitten as well. Together they are youthful and exuberant and seek new thrills bungee-jumping, paintballing, and on dinner dates. On a romantic weekend trip things start to fall apart. She’s alone again, lost, and longing for a connection. She takes to smoking weed and lying listlessly in bed. Then through a series of events she finds herself, becomes comfortable in her own skin. It’s a story of redemption, of conquering chronic loneliness, and of female strength. In her role as the titular Gloria, Paulina Garcia is magnetic, endearing, and radiant. In the end, it’s the ultimate feel good movie that we all often need. Gloria opens in NYC and LA on January 24.
“A divorced woman in her late 50s recaptures her life in Sebastian Lelio’s pitch-perfect, terrifically written Gloria.” — Variety
“Funny, melancholy and ultimately uplifting” — The Hollywood Reporter
Mercedes Sosa: The Voice of Latin America
Director: Rodrigo H. Vila
With millions of records sold, thousands of concerts all over the world, and countless fans (and detractors), Mercedes Sosa left behind an indelible legacy. Featuring unforgettable performances that span Sosa’s 60-year career and interviews with musicians like Pablo Milanés, Chico Buarque and David Byrne, this stirring portrait takes us on an in-depth, intimate journey through her life, revealing an artist who became one of the most influential personalities of the 20th century. Mercedes Sosa: The Voice of Latin America opens in New York on January 24.