Things That Matter

21 Reasons Why You Simply Must Watch Alfonso Cuaron’s Oscar-Winning ‘Roma’

“Roma” has taken the film world by storm. Most critics have already begun to include it in favorite film lists. Not just for this year but for ones that include works from the past 20 years as well. During a screening of the film at the 56th New York Film Festival, Mexican director Guillermo del Toro proclaimed it as one of his five favorite films of all time. Del Toro even made time to go to the Oscars, despite being sick, to hand Alfonso Cuarón his Oscar for Best Actor for “Roma.”

Here is some of what you can expect from the Oscar-winning film.

It fittingly deals with a taboo theme in Mexican society: race.

Credit: Roma / Netflix

There are amazing human moments in the Netflix flick. The theme of race runs throughout “Roma.” Like many Latin American countries, Mexico is a country that’s highly defined by race. In colonial times, the country was ruled by the caste system and today Mexican society continues to operate under similar conditions.

It deals with a dark and overlooked period in Mexican history.

Credit: Roma / Netflix

The period that “Roma” portrays is a tense calm. Three years after the 1968 Tlatelolco Massacre and after the Olympic Games (which happened just a few weeks after the massacre), Mexico seemed to be in a historical juncture in which progress was possible. The ‘68 events had happened, and the government had swept it under the rug. There was a new president, who was one of the politicians responsible for the massacre. The presidency went from Gustavo Díaz Ordaz to Luis Echeverría, who was infamous for state repression. In the middle of the Cold War, there was a single-party system in Mexico that Nobel Prize-winner Mario Vargas Llosa, the Peruvian novelist, called the “perfect dictatorship”. It was covered with democratic paint but at its core, it was a repressive state, not only in the city with student movements but also in rural areas.

Yalitzia Aparicio’s breathtaking performance has been on everyone’s mind since the film was released.

Credit: Roma / Netflix

Move over Merryl Streep. Yalitzia Aparicio is totally amazing in her first role, and the award season, while disappointing at the Oscars, was so kind to her.

Libo, Cuarón’s former nanny who is in her 90’s, is one of Cuarón’s biggest inspirations.

Credit: Roma / Netflix

The director wrote the script to honor Libo, an amazing tiny yet strong woman who held his family together in times of confusion and chaos. This picture is just too much.

It acknowledged the crucial role of domestic workers in family dynamics, especially in affluent communities.

Credit: Roma / Netflix

Mexico City’s society functions because of domestic workers, who often take the role of main caregivers for children. This is shown in “Roma” in a candid, loving way.

It includes dialogue in indigenous languages, which is major right now.

Credit: Roma / Netflix

Contrary to movies who are only spoken in Spanish or English, “Roma” stays true to its characters by having dialogue in Mixtec, the language spoken in some regions of Oaxaca.

It is a poignant look at the strength of Mexican mothers.

Credit: Roma / Netflix

Any Latino knows that women are the cornerstone of families. Cuarón shows how crucial the role of mothers and abuelitas is in the household, and how they face tribulations with strength and wisdom.

It is a one-man-show and Cuarón got a lot of recognition at the 91st Academy Awards.

Credit: Roma / Netflix

It is rare to watch a movie in which the director takes on many roles. Cuarón wrote, produced, shot, directed and edited this one and it is a real clavado en su mente.

It celebrates our similarities, rather than our differences, as human beings and shows the power of humanity.

Credit: Roma / Netflix

On paper, there are few similarities between the wealthy and the struggling characters, but they share what matters the most: their basic humanity.

Cuarón has captured the true essence of Mexico City.

Credit: Roma / Netflix

If anyone grew up or has visited Mexico City will recognize the sights, sounds and even indications of smells that populate this modern day masterpiece. From the tamale carts to the knife sharpener it is just amazing.

It offers some of the most stunning images in recent cinema and that’s why it won the Oscar for Best Cinematography.

Credit: Roma / Netflix

Cuarón delves not only into his own personal memory as a very privileged Mexican but also into cinematic memory. There are winks to Italian neo-realism. There’s a very fond and amazing wink to Federico Fellini’s “8 ½(Otto o mezzo).” There’s a fantastic scene which deals with politics and state repression that is obviously an echo of The Battle of Algiers, a movie that Cuarón himself referenced in his other great work “Children of Men.”

It is ethnically diverse, showing what real Mexico looks like when you widen the lens of representation.

Credit: Roma / Netflix

Most Mexican films that travel to world festivals or make it big in the box office only show white Mexicans that look like models. Not “Roma.” It is an ethnically diverse movie representing the country it depicts.

It features wrestler Latin Lover.

Credit: Roma / Netflix

There are plenty of pop culture references to 1970s Mexico, but also an appearance by the popular wrestler Latin Lover. Lucha libre fans will love this.

It demonstrates how awful Western standards of beauty truly are for so many people.

Credit: Roma / Netflix

Aparicio is beautiful and the director shot her features in a way that prove this. It’s a reminder of how inaccurate beauty standards are, how non-inclusive the Western gaze can be. The fact that Aparicio has been ridiculed in social media because she is indigenous proves just how severe this problem continues to be.

It criticizes policies that lead to extreme poverty in underprivleged communities.

Credit: Roma / Netflix

People came from the countryside because the promises of the Mexican Revolution were not fulfilled for indigenous and rural populations. They all went to the city and these cinturones de miseria (belts of misery) were created around Mexico City. So, this movie is about that as well along with the historical memory of early 1970s Mexico.

It is the most chilango movie made, like, ever.

Credit: Roma / Netflix

What makes this film special is that Alfonso Cuarón took a deep dive into his own personal memory as a chilango– a white, middle-class Mexican from Mexico City, which is quite important because racial politics are extremely important in this film and the country as a whole.

Marriage is complicated and sometimes beyond any logic.

Credit: Roma. Netflix.

At the center of Roma’s story is a marital breakup. It is a simple, yet complicated situation that the director presents in a direct, non-melodramatic way. We very seldom see this approach in Mexican cinema, which is so influenced by telenovelas.

That ocean scene no manches, wow!

Credit: Roma / Netflix

We don’t want to spoil the movie but there is a crucial scene that happens among the waves and it is just breathtakingly gorgeous. So tense, so amazing. A moment that will live forever in film history.

Men are inconsequential in the film and it is so refreshing to see women at the center of the story.

Credit: Roma / Netflix

The movie is about women, and contrary to most mainstream stories men are just secondary characters. Hollywood should learn from this.

It offers some truly surreal moments.

Credit: Roma. Netflix.

Andre Breton, the father of the Surrealist Movement, once said that Mexico is surreal by nature. This is captured by this film, which offers some weird moments like this one, were a group of white Mexicans shoot guns in the woods just for fun.

All you need is love.

Credit: Roma / Netflix

Love is the force that is ever so present in “Roma.” The film shows us that any obstacle can be belittled if we offer each other help and comfort.

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Missouri Woman Seen Holding Pelosi Sign Faces First Judge In Series Of Court Dates For Federal Charges

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Missouri Woman Seen Holding Pelosi Sign Faces First Judge In Series Of Court Dates For Federal Charges

homegrownterrorists / Instagram

Update January 21, 2021

A Missouri woman named Emily Hernandez had a court hearing in St. Louis after her involvement in the Capitol riots. Hernandez, 21, is facing several federal charges after participating in the deadly Capitol riot.

Emily Hernandez is facing the music after storming the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6.

According to KSDK, Hernandez, who is from Sullivan, Missouri, has been released without bond after her first hearing in St. Louis. She has been ordered to stay in the Eastern District of Missouri until her next court date in Washington. Part of the terms of her release is that she is not allowed to travel to Washington other than for her court date.

During the hearing, she was recorded saying, “I’m sorry, I’m nervous.”

Hernandez is facing the following federal charges: knowingly entering or remaining in any restricted building or grounds, disorderly conduct which impedes the conduct of government business, steal, sell, convey or dispose of anything of value in the United States, disruptive conduct in the Capitol buildings, parading, demonstrating or picketing in the Capitol buildings.

Original: After a group of Trump supporters stormed the Capitol Jan. 6, people immediately started identifying the intruders. Videos have been circulating and people are steadily contacting the FBI to expose them. Instagram page @homegrownterrorists is one of the leading forces in identifying the rioters.

On Jan. 6, people stormed our Capitol building and the American people are demanding justice.

Images of people storming the Capitol building and looting the offices of members of Congress startled people around the world. One of the safest places in the world was overrun by far-right Trump supporters attacking the democratic process. Americans are demanding justice and working together to identify and report as many people to the FBI that were at the Capitol.

The Instagram page is unapologetically encouraging followers to identify people at the Capitol.

Five people died as a result of the riot, two of them were police officers. The Instagram page, run anonymously, is encouraging people to share the photos to their stories to increase the reach. The account might not have any legal power, but it is having some success. There has been more than one person identified through the IG page that has led to people losing jobs and being arrested by the FBI.

The account has disappeared multiple times but always comes back.

The mystery person running the account has expressed concern over their safety. The account has been suspended by Instagram after being reported by multiple people. There has even been some talk about them receiving threats of violence via DMs.

The person who runs the account has mentioned it randomly on their stories but with no real detail. According to recent stories, the person behind the account doesn’t want to antagonize the people sending threats.

The owner of the account did say that they have been contacted by Instagram about the account.

A tweet from HomeGrownTerrorists caught Instagram’s attention and the account was reinstated. However, there was a backup account to keep functioning in case the original got deleted. IG and the account owner reached an agreement where they get to keep the main account and the backup account was permanently banned. No questions asked.

If you want to help or be connected to the cause, you can follow this page on Instagram.

There are a lot of people left to identify and the nation’s law enforcement is bracing for more violence. Capitols in all 50 states are on alert for possible attacks and the National Guard is being mobilized in big numbers for the inauguration. We are not out of the woods when it comes to the threats that have been made.

READ: After Last Week’s Riots, A Black Woman Has Been Appointed to U.S. Capitol Police Chief

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UPS Delivery Man Is Fired After Video Surfaces of His Anti-Latino Racist Rant

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UPS Delivery Man Is Fired After Video Surfaces of His Anti-Latino Racist Rant

Photo courtesy Forward Latino

An unnamed UPS delivery driver has been fired after being caught using racist language when delivering a package to a Latino household. The incident occurred on December 17th.

The video, which was caught on a doorbell camera’s security footage, shows a white UPS driver appearing to be angry when delivering a package.

“Now you don’t get f—–g nothing…You can’t read and write and speak the f—–g English language,” he says while writing a “failed to deliver” notice and pasting it on the house’s front door.

The Aviles family says that the footage shows that the UPS worker never even attempted to deliver the package in the first place. He never rang the doorbell or knocked on the door. Based on that, the family has come to the conclusion that the driver intentionally withheld the package from the family out of prejudice and spite

They believe that the only way the driver could’ve known that the family was Latino was by making assumptions based off the name on the package.

“The only information this driver had that could serve as a trigger for this deep-seated hate was the name on the package,” said Forward Latino President Darryl Morin at a press conference addressing the incident.

“So what we have here is a very intentional act to ruin Christmas for somebody, for someone to spew this hateful rhetoric, and quite honestly to deceive their employer,” Morin continued.

Per UPS, the employee has now been fired. “There is no place in any community for racism, bigotry or hate. This is very serious and we promptly took action, terminating the driver’s employment. UPS is wholeheartedly committed to diversity, equity and inclusion,” UPS said in a statement. They also said they contacted the family to apologize.

But the Aviles family is still rattled that such bigoted people are out and about, letting their petty prejudices effect other people’s lives.

“The package was a Christmas gift that we eventually received after Christmas Day, but what if it happened to have time-sensitive content like an epipen or a book I needed to take a final,” said Shirley Aviles, the mother of the man who lives at the address, told NBC News. “I don’t get it. It’s just sad.”

Aviles seemed disturbed about what this incident says about human nature. “This is about the things people do when they think no one is watching them. That’s important because that’s when you see people’s true colors and that’s what’s scary,”

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