Director: Sebastián Lelio
Starring: Paulina García, Sergio Hernández, Diego Fontecilla, Fabiola Zamora, Alejandro Goic, Coca Guazzini, Hugo Moraga, Luz Jiménez, Cristián Carvajal, Liliana García, Antonia Santa María, Eyal Meyer, Marcial Tagle, Marcela Said.
‘Gloria’ is a Chilean-Spanish drama directed by Sebastián Lelio, that premiered in competition at the 63rd Berlin International Film Festival, where Paulina García won the Silver Bear for Best Actress.
Gloria (Paulina García) is a 58 year old divorcée. Her children have all left home but she has no desire to spend her days and nights alone. Determined to defy old age and loneliness, she rushes headlong into a whirl of singles’ parties on the hunt for instant gratification – which just leads repeatedly to disappointment and emptiness. But then she meets Rodolfo (Sergio Hernández), an ex-naval officer seven years her senior to whom she feels romantically inclined. She even begins to imagine a permanent relationship. However, the encounter presents unexpected challenges and Gloria gradually finds herself being forced to confront her own dark secrets.
Despite the glorious response the movie received at 2013 Toronto International Film Festival and its selection as the Chilean entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 86th Academy Awards, the story seems to drag itself in a never ending plod. The theme of a woman approaching third age and seeking acceptance from the world, through initially numerous male partners and gradually only one who turns out to be nuts, could have been an interesting sociological topic to explore. Perhaps also the final message of learning how to feel at ease on our own before jumping into a relationship, despite it being a very worn-out cliche, could have been neat. But the story doesn’t have an actual evolution nor has the lead character a proper epiphany.
Circumstances reiterate annoyingly and pointlessly. Common places are scattered here in there. To complete the collection of expectable banalities the soundtrack of the movie just had to include the 1979 track ‘Gloria/Aria di Lei’ by the Turin songwriter Umberto Tozzi.
Written by: Chiara Spagnoli Gabardi