Gloria Bell: More Roles Like This For Women

John Turturro and Julianne Moore in Gloria Bell. Courtesy of A24

Julianne Moore brings quite the charm to Gloria Bell and this does not even take into account that the film is a remake of the award-winning original.

An office worker by day, the divorced Gloria (Julianne Moore) rocks out at Los Angeles clubs during the night.  One such night, Gloria ends up meeting Arnold (John Turturro).  The two of them manage to bond over the fact that they’re both divorced.  Arnold for a year while Gloria has been divorced for about some twelve years.

The two get to know each other and start to have some fun.  Arnold takes Gloria to skydive, play paintball, among others.

The thing about new relationships when you have grown children is this–when do you introduce them to your family?  This isn’t much of a problem for Gloria.  She happily brings Arnold with her to celebrate son Peter’s (Michael Cera) birthday.  All the family gathers around for the celebration.  This includes Gloria’s daughter, Anne, and ex-husband Dustin with his wife.  There’s just one problem.  Things get all too much for Arnold during the birthday part.  All of a sudden, he just walks up and leaves.  Nobody even notices!   It soon becomes a question of just who does Gloria care about.  Is it worth being with Arnold if the family pull is so strong?

There’s also a catch.  Arnold happens to have two daughters from his first marriage.  While he has no problem in putting himself out there for dating, Arnold afraid to let them meet Gloria.  It’s really unfortunate.  Can he truly love Gloria but not enough to meet the family?  This is what I sense to some extent.

I’m always hesitant when I hear that a film is getting a remake.  This is especially true when it comes to the all-time classics.  What makes Gloria Bell an exception to the rule is that the director is directing an English-Language remake of his own film.  Moreover, Julianne Moore’s performance is very fun and entertaining.  It’s a role that allows a woman north of 50 to lead a film but also shine while doing so.  These are roles that are so few and far between.  This is certainly one area allowing for Gloria Bell to stand apart from so many other films.  I cannot stress this enough!  More roles like this for women!

I like that the film is interspersed with musical performances.  Even though the show-stopping “Gloria” dance number doesn’t happen until the end, we all know it’s coming.  My cap is tipped to the sound team when it comes to listening to Julianne Moore sing to all these hit songs.

Julianne Moore absolutely dominates every minute of Gloria Bell and for this, filmgoers should be thankful for this English-language adaptation.

DIRECTOR/SCREENWRITER:  Sebastián Lelio
CAST:  Julianne Moore, John Turturro, Michael Cera, Caren Pistoruys, Brad Garrett, Jeanne Tripplehorn, Rita Wilson, with Sean Astin and Holland Taylor

A24 opened Gloria Bell in theaters on March 8, 2019. Grade: 4/5

Danielle Solzman

Danielle Solzman is native of Louisville, KY, and holds a BA in Public Relations from Northern Kentucky University and a MA in Media Communications from Webster University. She roots for her beloved Kentucky Wildcats, St. Louis Cardinals, Indianapolis Colts, and Boston Celtics. Living less than a mile away from Wrigley Field in Chicago, she is an active reader (sports/entertainment/history/biographies/select fiction) and involved with the Chicago improv scene. She also sees many movies and reviews them. She has previously written for Redbird Rants, Wildcat Blue Nation, and Hidden Remote/Flicksided. From April 2016 through May 2017, her film reviews can be found on Creators.