Four Moons

"Excellent"

Four Moons Review


With sometimes unnerving honesty, this multi-strand Mexican drama explores male sexuality through stories set at four stages of life (or four phases of the moon). So even if the film feels sometimes overscripted and uneven, it's so intimate that it can't help but get under the skin. It's rare to see a film explore the experiences of gay men in such a deeply personal way that will resonate strongly with anyone, regardless of age, gender or sexuality.

Set in Mexico City, the four stories are interwoven, connected strongly by their themes. Mauricio (Gabriel Santoyo) is a pre-teen just discovering that he's more attracted to his friend Oliver (Sebastian Rivera) than the girls, and he knows his curiosity could be a problem. In his early 20s, Fito (Cesar Ramos) reconnects with his childhood buddy Leo (Gustavo Egelhaaf), and while both are straight they find their mutual attraction irresistible. But Leo doesn't want anyone else to know. In his 30s, Andres (Alejandro de la Madrid) is terrified that his boyfriend of 10 years, Hugo (Antonio Velazquez), is going to leave him for another man (Hugo Catalan), so he sets a plan in motion to save the relationship. And married, retired poet Joaquin (Alonso Echanove) secretly visits a local sauna, trying to connect with an arrogant, muscled escort (Alejandro Belmonte).

Filmmaker Sergio Tovar Valverde slices straight through Latino machismo by showing these men as strong people whose deepest desires put them at odds with expectations. All of them yearn for love and attachment but worry about rejection from society, family and the objects of their affection. So even though the plots never intersect, there's a strong connection between the stories that makes them sometimes feel like four alternate-reality elements of one man's life. The most involving strand is Fito and Leo's, as it tackles such a wide range of emotions with gritty realism. By comparison, Andres and Hugo's story feels rather soapy, dealing with conflict in a preachy way that seems unlikely for a couple that's been together for a decade.

A few of the characters are somewhat underdeveloped, including Echanove's geriatric poet, although his storyline takes the most artful approach, evoking a complex emotional response. And the strongest character is young Mauricio, played with startling transparency by Santoyo as an intelligent boy who knows the truth about himself and refuses to ignore it just to keep the peace. With situations this earthy and truthful, the film is packed with revelatory moments that easily transcend its sometimes simplistic production values. And the film's subtle power may help change the way people think.

 

 



Facts and Figures

Genre: Foreign

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 4 / 5

Cast & Crew

Director: Sergio Tovar Velarde

Producer: Edgar Barron

Starring: Antonio Velázquez as Hugo, Alejandro de la Madrid as Andrés, Cesar Ramos as Fito, Gustavo Egelhaff as Leo, Alonso Echánove as Joaquín, Alejandro Belmonte as Gilberto, Alejandro Belmonte as Mauricio, Alejandro Belmonte as Oliver, Sebastián Rivera as Aurora, Marta Aura as Petra, Hugo Catalán as Sebastián, Jorge Luis Moreno as Enrique, Karina Gidi as Laura, Juan Manuel Bernal as Hector

Contactmusic


Advertisement

Contactmusic 2017 Exclusive

New Movies

Life Movie Review

Life Movie Review

Like a mash-up of Alien and Gravity, this ripping sci-fi horror movie is very effective...

The Lost City of Z Movie Review

The Lost City of Z Movie Review

Based on a true story, it's the historical aspect of these events that holds the...

Chips Movie Review

Chips Movie Review

It's clear from the very start that this movie has little to do with the...

Beauty And The Beast Movie Review

Beauty And The Beast Movie Review

This remake of Disney's 1991 classic is remarkably faithful, using present-day digital animation effects to...

The Salesman Movie Review

The Salesman Movie Review

Iranian filmmaker Asghar Farhadi won his second Oscar with this astute drama which, like 2011's...

Get Out Movie Review

Get Out Movie Review

Leave it to a comedian to make one of the scariest movies in recent memory....

Personal Shopper Movie Review

Personal Shopper Movie Review

After winning a series of major awards for her role in Olivier Assayas' Clouds of...

Advertisement
Certain Women Movie Review

Certain Women Movie Review

In films like Wendy and Lucy and Meek's Cutoff, writer-director Kelly Reichardt has told sharply...

Kong: Skull Island Movie Review

Kong: Skull Island Movie Review

After the success of 2014's Godzilla reboot, the Warner Bros monsters get their own franchise,...

Viceroy's House Movie Review

Viceroy's House Movie Review

Filmmaker Gurinder Chada (Bend It Like Beckham) draws on her own family history to explore...

Trespass Against Us Movie Review

Trespass Against Us Movie Review

With an extra dose of attitude and energy, this Irish comedy-drama hits us like a...

Logan Movie Review

Logan Movie Review

Hugh Jackman returns to his signature role one last time (so he says), reuniting with...

Patriots Day Movie Review

Patriots Day Movie Review

The third time's a charm for Mark Wahlberg and director Peter Berg, who previously teamed...

A Cure for Wellness Movie Review

A Cure for Wellness Movie Review

It's no surprise that this creep-out horror thriller is packed with whizzy visual invention, since...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.