CREDIT: Alfonso Cuarón

People such as Cleo, the live-in maid for a well-off middle-class Mexican family, are not usually the focal points of major motion pictures. Her life is not extraordinary, at least not in the typically obvious sense of the term. But that does not mean that her story cannot be successfully rendered cinematically. All human beings inherently have value, and Alfonso Cuarón’s closeness to the material means that Roma is bursting with straightforward humanity. In fact, the entirety of Roma is fairly straightforward, which for some might mean pleasant and affecting but for others might mean boring and pointless. I am somewhere in the middle – I cared about what was happening to Cleo, but I don’t think she is going to indelibly stick with me.

Now for the big question: should you see Roma in a theater instead of just streaming it on your streaming device? Yes, insofar as every movie is better in a big theater. But it’s not especially true in this case. Cuarón’s craft is still alive and well, but it’s been much more mind-blowing elsewhere.

I give Roma 15 Dog Turds out of 25 Narrow Garage Park Jobs.

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