Y Tu Mamá También (2001)

y tu mama tambien poster 2001 movie
9.5 Overall Score
Story: 9/10
Acting: 10/10
Visuals: 10/10

Great cast and location, strong story

Sex and drug themes will be too much for some

Movie Info

Movie Name:  Y Tu Mamá También

Studio:   Anhelo Producciones

Genre(s):   Drama

Release Date(s):   June 8, 2001

MPAA Rating:   Unrated

y tu mama tambien car ride maribel verdu diego luna gael garcia bernal

Movin’ right along…footloose and fancy free!

Julio (Gael Garcia Bernal) and Tenoch (Diego Luna) are spending the summer alone after their girlfriends go overseas to Italy.  When Tenoch and Julio meet Tenoch’s cousin’s wife Luisa (Maribel Verdú), she begins to fuel their fantasies.  A lofty offer of a trip to the ocean is accepted by Luisa, and Julio and Tenoch find their friendship could be challenged by Luisa’s presence.

Directed by Alfonso Cuarón (who also cowrote the film with his brother Carlos Cuarón), Y Tu Mamá También is a coming-of-age travel drama.  The movie was released to critical acclaim and was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay.  The Criterion Collection released a remastered version of the film (Criterion #723).

Y Tu Mamá También was on my list for a long, long time.  It was one of those critical darling films from a director I respected, but for some reason, I just never sat down and watched it.  Finally watching the film, I understand the lauding it receives.

y tu mama tambien boat diego luna gael garcia bernal maribel verdu

Suddenly, this turns into The Most Dangerous Game as the family begins to hunt Tenoch, Julio, and Luisa on an abandoned island…

The movie has an odd tone, but it is very similar to other movies from the period (especially foreign).  Like Amelie and even in some ways Run Lola Run, the film has a narrator that provides “extra” information on events and locations that don’t necessarily add to the story but enrich it.  The characters don’t live in a bubble and are part of something bigger.  Each character feels rounded in this sense and their own faults and emotions come into play…and they enjoy themselves (physically and emotionally) more when they burst these bubbles.  It is a changing couple of days for the characters for better or for worse.

The cast is great.  Gael Garcia Bernal and Diego Luna both have proven since this film their abilities, but here shows early insight into their skills as actors.  They feel like real teens, and both characters seem confused about what they want and need.  Maribel Verdú brings real energy to the role and plays a woman holding the ultimate secret about her life from those around her…and she is trying to live free as a result (mistakes and all).

y tu mama tambien dance scene luisa julio tenoch diego luna gael garcia bernal maribel verdu

This happens to everyone when their growing up…right?

The movie is also aided by the landscape of the travelers.  You see all different types of landscape in Mexico as they travel to the ocean and the movie is punctuated with uncertainty by the political upheaval (like people randomly being arrested beside the road).  The movie’s journey ends at the idyllic beach that went from fantasy to reality…but fantasy cannot be sustained and reality always comes back.

Y Tu Mamá También is about growth…growing up, changing, evolving.  In the course of a short week, the characters who have known each other for years grow closer than ever and then completely separate.  In the movie it takes a physical form (very, very physical at parts), but it is also a basic concept of growing up.  You will always have that bond, but you may never see the person again.  It is hard, and it sometimes hurts, but it is life…and it would be great if you could be like Luisa and find a way to let it go.

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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