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Leona (2018)Leona (2018)

Leona (2018)

A Jewish Latina confronts truths about love, life, and self

Drama, Romance

7.6

movie

Mexico

Spanish

Character-driven, Discussion-sparking, Dramatic

2018

Isaac Cherem

Carlos Aragón, Carolina Politi, Christian Vazquez

95 min

Synopsis

Ariela, a traditional Jew, meets Ivan, a young man who is not Jewish with whom she begins a secret relationship despite her family beliefs.

Our Take

7.6
Renee Cuisia

Present-day Mexico City—Ariela comes from a Jewish family that insists on getting married only to people of the same religion. This rule is complicated when Ariela falls in love with the non-Jewish Iván. She is then faced with the dilemma of choosing herself or her family, who for all their severity, she still loves deeply.

Leona’s modern-day retelling of Romeo and Juliet recalls the likes of Crazy Rich Asians and The Big Sick, but unlike those big-budgeted movies, this intimate Spanish-language film exchanges melodrama for restraint, and it’s all the better for it. Leona is a quietly moving story that’s easy to relate to, despite the specificity of its premise.

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