Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBB.5.
USA/Mexico, 1987. G. Brimmer Productions, TriStar Pictures. Developed by Luis Mandoki, Screenplay by Michael Love, Martin Salinas. Cinematography by Lajos Koltai. Produced by Pinchas Perry. Music by Maurice Jarre. Production Design by Alejandro Luna. Costume Design by Lucile Donay, Tolita Figueroa. Film Editing by Garth Craven. Academy Awards 1987. Golden Globe Awards 1987. National Board of Review Awards 1987.
Soapy but still touching story of a physically challenged young woman who does everything she can to live a perfectly confident life. Rachel Chagall is excellent in a true story as Gabriela Brimmer, a woman afflicted by cerebral palsy but taught by her nurse (Norma Aleandro) to read and to write, leading to her very successful career as a poet. Aleandro is marvelous as the kindly nurse, who goes against the girl’s frightened mother (Liv Ullmann) in making sure not to treat the girl like she’s any different from anybody else. Lots of painful moments, lots of triumph, all of it kept very real by director Luis Mandoki. Levin herself experienced paralysis earlier in life because of Guillain-Barre syndrome, overcoming it to continue on to an acting career on stage and on film.