Realism. This is the word that summarizes why the film Roma is so great. It perfectly reflects the realism of Mexico’s class system. The indigenous people are at the bottom of the society, while light-skinned people who associate themselves with Europeans rule the land.
I well remember the servants I saw in Mexico. They were from the lower rungs of the ladder. One of my relatives was extremely poor and barely had the funds to survive. But somehow she always found some change in her purse. It was enough to hire neighboring ladies to do some house work; washing dishes or laundering or ironing clothes. The ladies would be extremely grateful as the change they earned might provide their family with food for a day.
Roma shows prosperous Americans what the life of an indigenous maid in Mexico is like. It also displays the role of politics in every Mexican’s life and how they react to and handle the current political situation. And, sometimes disturbingly, it shows the violence in the country that is never displayed on U.S. news programs.
In one situation, Roma shows how everyone helps in an emergency. The point is well made that we are all dependent upon each other as human beings, regardless of social status.
Roma is surprisingly good. I believe it has a solid chance to win the Academy Award for Best Picture. If it does it will break the glass ceiling in unique fashion and serve as a meaningful tribute to the lives of proud, striving and hardworking people.
Alejandro Reyes is a former production line supervisor for Procter and Gamble. Educated in Stockton, California, he is enjoying retirement in sunny southern California.