Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Actors: Michelle Williams, Gael Garcia Bernal
Director: Lukas Moodysson
Genres: Action & Adventure, Drama, Horror
New York City workaholic parents are slowed down by a chain of events that can possibly change their lives.
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Grady Harp | Los Angeles, CA United States | 12/26/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"MAMMOTH is a sensitively written and directed film by Lukas Moodysson that adroitly traces three stories that all intertwine within the confines of one family. It touches on many aspects of human relationships but the one driving force behind each of the several stories that are woven in this film is the importance of family. It is a profoundly moving film beautifully brought to life by a fine cast of actors.
Leo Vidales (Gael García Bernal in yet another role that proves he is one of the finest actors on the screen today, despite his young age) is a highly successful designer of video games, married to Ellen (Michelle Williams), a committed Physician and Surgeon, and parent to a vibrant little girl Jackie (Sophie Nyweide) who is devoted to her Filipino nanny Gloria (Marife Necesito) who is living with the Vidales to make money to send home to her treasured young sons Manuel (Martin Delos Santos) and Salvador (Jan David G. Nicdao) living in the Philippines with their grandmother (Maria Esmeralda del Carmen). Leo's family unit is warm and secure (the only minor crack in the veneer is young Jackie's preference for spending time with the more available Gloria than with Ellen due to Ellen's long hours in the hospital).
Leo is called to Thailand on a business trip to sell his ideas to Thai entrepreneurs and while there his business partner (Thomas McCarthy) suggests that he partake of the feminine charms readily available in this country. Leo is faithful and declines advances from call girls but eventually gives in to a beautiful young Cookie (Natthamonkarn Srinikornchot) only to be driven by remorse to make a quick sell of his product to return to his family. Meanwhile at home Ellen is devastated by the death of one of her young patients and in her distress she must allow Gloria to return to the Philippines whose one son has been severely beaten in his attempt to gain more money for his family so that his mother needn't work in the USA.
How the results of all these traumas resolve forms the touching ending of this moving story.
While each of the actors mentioned is superb, Gael García Bernal shines in a very subtle role as does Michelle Williams who manages to make Ellen credible without becoming saccharine. Yes, if the story sounds a bit like another film in the style of Alejandro González Iñárritu ('Babel') or Paul Haggis ('Crash'), then that is a fine comparison as this film is in many ways a more intimate version of that kind of storytelling. Highly recommended. Grady Harp, December 09"
Where Do All the Children Play?
The Cultural Sojourner | Southern California | 08/05/2010
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Disregard the film synopsis. These interwined stories, from varying cultural standpoints, confront and question post-modern values. The pursuit of money to better our lives and childrens' exacts a high price. Each character determines if the cost is worth it. This film's direction, symbolism and 'message' is far from subtle."