Following up his epic space drama Gravity, Alfonso Cuarón is getting grounded with new feature ROMA. Set to premiere at Venice, then play at TIFF and NYFF, the drama is set in Mexico City in the early ’70s as we follow a middle-class family, and specifically its nanny and housekeeper (Yalitza Aparicio). After a brief tease and ahead of a release this December on Netflix and in theaters, the stunning first trailer has now arrived, showing off the gorgeous black-and-white cinematography, shot by Cuarón himself.
“I was absolutely stunned by ROMA from beginning to end—by the craftsmanship and the artistry of everyone involved, by the physical power and gravitational force of the images, by the realization that I was seeing something magical: a story of ongoing life grounded within the immensity and mystery of just being here on this planet. Alfonso Cuarón’s film is a wonder,” said New York Film Festival Director and Selection Committee Chair Kent Jones.
“Ninety percent of the scenes represented in the film are scenes taken out of my memory,” Cuarón said. “Sometimes directly, sometimes a bit more obliquely. It’s about a moment of time that shaped me, but also a moment of time that shaped a country. It was the beginning of a long transition in Mexico.”
See the teaser trailer below.
ROMA chronicles a turbulent year in the lives of a middle-class family in 1970s Mexico City. Cuarón, inspired by the women from his childhood, delivers an artful ode to the matriarchy that shaped his world.
A vivid portrayal of domestic strife and social hierarchy amidst political turmoil, ROMA follows a young domestic worker Cleo (Yalitza Aparicio) from Mixteco heritage descent and her co-worker Adela (Nancy García), also Mixteca, who work for a small family in the middle-class neighborhood of Roma. Mother of four, Sofia (Marina de Tavira), copes with the extended absence of her husband, Cleo faces her own devastating news that threatens to distract her from caring for Sofia’s children, whom she loves as her own. While trying to construct a new sense of love and solidarity in a context of a social hierarchy where class and race are perversely intertwined, Cleo and Sofia quietly wrestle with changes infiltrating the family home in a country facing confrontation between a government-backed militia and student demonstrators.
Filmed in luminous black and white, ROMA is an intimate, gut-wrenching and ultimately life-affirming portrait of the ways, small and large, one family maintains its balance in a time of personal, social and political strife.
ROMA plays at Venice, TIFF, and NYFF, and opens in December in theaters and on Netflix.