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film review

Julianne Moore stars in Gloria Bell.Hilary Bronwyn Gayle/Courtesy of VVS

  • Gloria Bell
  • Written and directed by Sebastian Lelio
  • Starring Julianne Moore, John Turturro and Michael Cera
  • Classification 14A; 102 minutes

Rating:

3.5 out of 4 stars

You might mistake Gloria Bell for a story of the pursuit of romantic love – it does indeed follow a divorcee, played with wonderful vulnerability and a touch of humour by Julianne Moore, as she dates John Turturro’s Arnold, the potentially lovable but ultimately undeserving father controlled by his needy adult daughters. But as the film’s soundtrack of cheesy disco and rock classics tells us, this story is just as much in praise of putting yourself out there as it is a warning against chasing after a love other than our own. Moore leads this fresh and loving English-language take by Chilean director Sebastian Lelio of his own 2013 film Gloria, but is well supported by other loves in her life, present and past: Brad Garrett, Holland Taylor, Rita Wilson and others. “When the world blows up, I hope to go down dancing,” Bell tells her friends at one point. And mark her words, even when it all falls apart, dance she does.

Gloria Bell opens March 15