Empanadas For Allwritten by dmt5 on Jun 3rd, 2010read all my reviews
this review is from: Entre Nos (DVD)
Despite being an immigrant story, Entre Nos has surprisingly little to do with United States immigration policies. Though released during a period where the debate over immigration reform seems to be reaching a fever pitch, Entre Nos manages to avoid any overt political commentary on the subject. For some, this will undoubtedly be to the movie's detriment; however, Entre Nos works *because* it doesn't try to tackle any larger issues. It is a simple film, unburdened by any need to Tell Us How The World Really Is, and it is that simplicity that makes the film work on such a human level.
From a technical standpoint the film may not seem like anything special, but triple-threat director/writer/leading actress Paola Mendoza manages to infuse Entre Nos with a striking and palpable sense of gritty realism. New York is presented as neither a sterling metropolis nor a grime-infested deathtrap; it simply exists, as unconcerned with the main characters' plight as any random passerby. Speaking of Mendoza, it is her genuinely touching performance as Mariana that elevates the film to the level it is at. She is resilient and loving but also fearful and deeply hurt by her husband's betrayal; Mendoza tackles this emotional gauntlet like a seasoned veteran. Credit, too, must also be given to Laura Montana and Sebastian Villada â€“ who play Mariana's children Andrea and Gabriel, respectively - as their performances are as equally real as Mendoza's, without the stiffness and wooden delivery that so often plagues child actors.
Entre Nos may not be for everyone. It's a sparse and quiet film that doesn't attempt to explain or solve the issues that surround immigration. However, in a time when the facts about immigration reform are frequently be boiled down to mere numbers and statistics, Entre Nos serves as a reminder that, for all the talk of stolen jobs and welfare exploitation, there is a human element involved that is all too frequently forgotten.