Tuesday, June 23, 2009

"Live-in Maid" (2004, Dir: Jorge Gaggero)

This gentle, perceptive character study is a breezy, poignant delight buoyed by two fantastic performances. Norma Argentina gives a wonderfully generous, open take on her character here, but for me the better of the two was Norma Aleandro. She wisely chooses not to play her self-absorbed ex-businesswoman for laughs, because her character, Beba, is funny to begin with. She's impossibly deluded, vain and self-centred - all very funny and very real traits in Aleandro's hands. But she lets us see how her relationship with Dora changes her. The role could have been incredibly shrill and grating in a lesser actress's hands, but Aleandro wisely chooses not to condescend to or judge the admittedly difficult character, playing her with insight, compassion, honesty and understanding. This film is definitely worth a look, it's a lovely little gem. The ending is perfect.

Grade: B

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