“Bella” favors the audience and leaves its critics scrambling for a reason not to like it. When a filmmaker decides to make a film that is artistic, delivers a positive message, a happy ending while touching at the heart and emotions of human conflict, Hollywood is generally not too interested, which is why the Toronto Film Festival awarded its “People’s Choice” award to the production and every other national film festival followed along with their collective thumbs up.
Despite its PG-13 rating, it’s a film that the whole family should share together and discuss. Much in the genre of “Life is Beautiful”, the film examines the beauty of why we are here, despite all the bad stuff that happens to us. The film makers decided that they wanted to make something worth seeing and worth sharing. A true cinematic gift comes along with this film. Isn’t a nice to see something on screen that speaks to the heart of the audience and not the “business” of films?
Press reports indicate that the momentum of the film is truly independent of the press it has not received. Truly, the internet and word of mouth has lent a hand toward ensuring that people see this movie and because of that, you know it has to be a really fine film.
Director Alejandro Monteverde weaves an emotional tale of self-discovery. Eduardo Verastegui (Chasing Papi) and Emmy award winning Tammy Blanchard (The Good Shepherd) deliver performances worthy of Oscar (even though we know that Hollywood won’t like them very much- reminiscent of Jim Cavaziel’s performance in another well known movie) but who cares, the ovations of the viewing audience as the credits roll are satisfactory enough. Those who experience “Bella” get it, even if Hollywood doesn’t. We haven’t seen the last of this cast or this director. It’s what makes the idea of Indy films truly a breath of fresh air.
A film that examines two people whose lives are changed forever in a single day in New York City, this film is about a simple discovery. Perhaps losing it all is what one needs to finally appreciate the things that truly matter.
Bella is a heartwarming story about life, family, relationships and the capacity for real love in the face of the unexpected. It’s playing at the Century 14 Theaters, off Eureka Blvd. in Roseville. Go see it this weekend and don’t forget to bring those you love and a box of Kleenex, I might need some.