Under The Same Moon (La Misma Luna) (DVD)

Under The Same Moon is a Spanish language, English-subtitled movie that focuses around Rosario’s (Kate del Castillo, Bordertown, American Visa) life as an illegal worker in the United States ,as ey tries to raise enough in the way of money to go forth and provide a better life for eir family. The orientation of the film is of a split-focus, with both Rosario and eir son, Carlitos being given equal time, allowing for some connections with each of the calls that Rosario makes to Carlitos whenever ey can find some time. The sad tragedy that brings mother and son together is the passing on of Rosario’s mother; while this may be director Patricia Riggen’s first major foray into films (“La Milpa” and “Family Portrait” were smaller, more intimately-released types of films), the emotional intensity present in Under The Same Moon shows a maturity that few in the way of directors, even the “old salts”, would be able to impress so completely on this film.

The bonus features that are present on Under The Same Moon are few in number but are informative as all get out. This means that “The Making of La Misma Luna” provides individuals with the differing motivations of each of the actors, the meanings behind some of the more confusing scenes in the movie, and allows viewers to get into the mind of Patricia Riggen in a way that short interviews and sound bytes would never be allowed to do. If individuals are perceptive enough, they will see a number of different murals featured both prominently and in the background during Under The Same Moon; “The Murals of La Misma Luna” showcase the meanings that were present in each one, despite the fact that some seem no more cohesive than a set of different designs and the like.

The story of illegal immigrants has been done a number of times in the last few decades, but I feel as if Riggen’s film shows the emotions present in illegal workers in a more accurate way than has been put forth in previous films. While I would not like eir to be considered to be the “illegal immigrant” director, I feel that there is a tremendous amount of range that could conceivably be tapped in future films. I will definitely have my ear to the ground regarding the next few projects of Riggin’s; you should be as well.

Rating: 7.0/10

Under The Same Moon (La Misma Luna) / 2008 Fox / 110 Minutes / http://www.foxhome.com /

Author: James McQuiston

Ph.D. in Political Science, Kent State University. I have been the editor at NeuFutur / neufutur.com since I was 15. Looking for new staff members all the time; email me if you are interested. Thanks!

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