There are many great films about maturity. Most of them said that it was a memorable and difficult process. Some excellent little depictions describe it as pain. That is the maturing journey that two Mexican teens experienced in “Y Tu Mamá También” (2001) (And Your Mother Too in English).
There will be many questions about the title, set by the director and screenwriter Alfonso Cuaron. “And your mother too” is a revealing clue to the two characters’ main secret, which you will want to discover for yourself at the end. It was when Tenoch (Diego Luna) and Julio (Gael Garcia Bernal) were partying drunk on the beach of the night, and spewing out everything they had hidden. One evening will be invisible in both memories for life, when there are no distances or worries, there is no limit to the youth, not even what is important. But that was the end of it all.
And Your Mother Too has the content of a typical, inspirational cruise movie that is almost available to young people: A trip to the sea. But this trip was completely beyond Tenoch’s and Julio’s plans, two close friends at two different levels. Tenoch was the son of an upscale politician, and Julio was a working-class family. They are bored and free, because the pair of girlfriends brought together to Italy summer vacation. In a wedding ceremony, the two become acquainted with the beautiful girl Luisa (Maribel Verdú), more than 10 years old, wife of Tenoch’s cousin. In order to solicit girls, they promised to take her to travel to Cape Holy Land, a beautiful fantasy beach.
At first, Luisa refused. But after knowing her husband’s affair, she changed her mind. Tenoch and Julio, with the only intention in mind is to find a way to sleep with Luisa, hurry to arrange the trip. Two young children, naughty sex, and a girl experienced but painful, can teach each other what?
And Your Mother Too could be the reason why Alfonso Cuarón went to film school. It’s a dream for the world to have an even more outstanding director later on with Gravity (2013). It took 15 years, and after some successful Hollywood movies like A Little Princess (1995), Great Expectations (1998) and Cuarón, Actual appearance. Accompanying him was young filmmaker Emmanuel Lubezki, who later became legendary with three consecutive Oscars (2014 to 2016).
Cuarón’s goal, in addition to portraying the process of maturity in the most authentic way, is to regain the balance in the South American touring genre. In early 2000, the genre was being dominated by Hollywood with its easygoing humor. And Your Mother Too is one of the first films to put political substance to create a distinct atmosphere. The context is in 1999, when Mexico came to a shock event when the ruling party lost its presidency after 71 years. We see the arrival of the Mexican president, the street protests, the troops walking the streets, and the search for people. In addition, Cuarón cleverly integrates local customs and culture at each trilogy site – for audiences interested in discovery.
But the delicacy of Cuarón is that he does not let any political events affect the world of Tenoch, Julio and Luisa. They all glance outside the car glass and their interest. The journey of maturity is a private, inviolable space where social anxiety does not exist. The only thing that reflects is the unborn child’s personality, and their confusion with their own emotions.
These embarrassments include sexuality and love, the very basic problem of adolescence. To talk about how sex is expressed in And Your Mother Too, perhaps more than one article is needed. It is real, passionate, thorny, and stunned at a particular level. The first scene is sex, depicting Tenoch and Julio making their last relationship with their girlfriend. The climax was sexual, as they had a “triple play” with Luisa. The three of them are quite similar to Gaspa Noé’s “Love” (2015) poster, which is leading the current “real sex” trend on film at the moment. But compared to the work of Cuarón, 15 years older, everything Noé do is only at the level of cheap porn. Do not paint, do not overdo, Cuarón portray sexuality in both vulgar and beautiful way, just as young people feel and obsessed with it. The way they do it.