Movie Review: Language Lessons 2021
Language Lessons is an intimate and emotionally captivating film that leaves a lasting impact on the viewer. Directed by Natalie Morales, this unconventional yet refreshing movie explores human connections, language barriers, and the power of genuine communication.
The plot revolves around the unlikely bond formed between Adam (played by Mark Duplass), an introverted man living in Oakland, California, and Cariño (Natalie Morales herself), his Spanish teacher from Costa Rica. When a surprise gift from Adam’s husband leads to him receiving online language lessons with Cariño, their relationship quickly evolves beyond mere student-teacher dynamics.
One of the strongest aspects of Language Lessons lies in its incredible acting performances. Mark Duplass delivers a nuanced portrayal of Adam’s complex emotional journey. Displaying vulnerability and authenticity throughout the film, Duplass brings Adam to life with depth and sincerity. Natalie Morales shines as Cariño, effortlessly blending warmth and wit while portraying her character’s growth alongside Adam.
The direction by Natalie Morales demonstrates a keen eye for capturing moments of vulnerability and tenderness. She skillfully navigates through different mediums such as video calls, laptop screens, and home footage to portray a sense of intimacy within this digital age. The fluidity between scenes creates an immersive experience where viewers truly feel like they are partaking in these heartfelt conversations.
José Gonzalez’s score perfectly complements the raw emotions portrayed on screen. The music amplifies pivotal moments while delicately allowing space for reflection during quieter scenes. It subtly weaves its way into your emotions without overpowering them.
Cinematographer Jeremy Mackie must be commended for his striking visual presentation that enhances the overall viewing experience. Through clever framing choices and creative shots within Zoom calls or tablet screens capturing characters’ reflections or reactions in real-time – every moment feels authentic yet visually captivating.
In terms of production design, though minimalistic due to its remote storytelling format, Language Lessons successfully immerses audiences into the characters’ environments. The use of realistic backgrounds and personal touches in their respective spaces adds depth to their identities and further strengthens the storytelling.
Language Lessons avoids relying heavily on special effects, instead focusing on the strength of its performances and storytelling. This intentional restraint allows viewers to fully engage with the characters’ emotions, making their connection all the more genuine.
The editing by Sofi Marshall is seamless, showcasing an impressive ability to create a coherent narrative out of various video formats. The pacing of Language Lessons is well-calibrated, expertly balancing moments of levity with introspection. Transitions between scenes are natural and never feel abrupt or disjointed.
Dialogues in Language Lessons are refreshingly authentic and reflective of real-life conversations, filled with both humor and poignant observations about human connection. The organic exchanges capture the essence of learning a language beyond grammar rules – it becomes about understanding one another on a deeper level.
What truly resonates throughout Language Lessons is its exploration of emotional vulnerability amidst an increasingly digital world. It emphasizes how profound connections can be fostered even through screens, reminding us that virtual interactions can hold just as much weight as those in-person. The film taps into universal emotions that touch our hearts and leave us contemplating our own relationships long after it ends.
While Language Lessons excels in many aspects, it may not appeal to those seeking fast-paced action or intricate plot twists. Its slow-burning character-driven narrative demands patience from viewers but rewards them generously with deeply touching moments.
In conclusion, Language Lessons triumphs as an emotionally charged cinematic experience that explores connection on multiple levels. With exceptional performances from Mark Duplass and Natalie Morales, sensitive direction by Morales herself, mesmerizing visuals by Jeremy Mackie, expert editing by Sofi Marshall, and an evocative score by José Gonzalez – this film leaves its mark long after the credits roll. Prepare for introspection and heartfelt conversations as you embark on this tender journey.
Release : 2021-09-10
Genre : Drama, Comedy, Romance
Runtime : 91
Home Page :
Company : Duplass Brothers Productions
Cast : Natalie Morales as Cariño, Mark Duplass as Adam, Desean Terry as Will, Christine Quesada as Cariño’s Cousin (voice)
LANGUAGE LESSONS Trailer (2021) Natalie Morales, Mark Duplass official trailer