gloria-27th-novSebastian Lelio’s film Gloria is the story of a divorced woman in her fifties (played by Paulina García) seeking to move forward, now that her children are independent, and finding new vigour in her thirst for life. The narrative also reflects aspirations in Chile as it moves away from its difficult recent history under Pinochet. But Gloria is not a political film, it is more joyous than that, it is a celebration of a woman who embraces life, rejects past experiences, and has hopes for a better future. “But be not mistaken, this is not just another pandering wish-fulfillment tale, like a Chilean remake of How Stella Got Her Groove Back. This is a grand work of incisive intimacy … ” – David Bax, Battleship Pretension. (Cert 15)
Dir: Sebastian Lelio 119 mins Chile/Spain 2013

Programme Notes

Chile/Spain 2013 119m Cert 15

Tonight’s film, directed by Sebastian Lelio, is as much a universal story of the pursuit of a happy and fulfilled future of its late 50s protagonist Gloria, as it is a subtle observation of life in post-Pinochet Chile.

Gloria (Pauilna Garcia) is woman who looks to the future, has dealt with difficulties in her life and hasn’t allowed the past to hold her back. She frequents singles bars optimistically looking for a ‘second bite’ of romantic happiness. There she meets Rodolfo (Sergio Hernandez), a retired naval officer, the ensuing relationship being at first tentative and then passionate. Gradually, it becomes clear to Gloria that, unlike herself, Rodolfo is still anchored in his past in both his family life and personal outlook. Sensitively filmed and constructed, this story of the romantic lives of 50-somethings is not a territory filmmakers usually inhabit.

Sebastian Lelio, born in 1974 to an Argentinian father and Chilean mother, has previously made a number of short films, a documentary and three feature films which were very dark in nature. Gloria emerges from this background with humour, vitality and verve – much like Gloria herself.

“The film’s pulse comes in many ways from Garcia’s brave and beautiful central performance” Maria Delgado, Sight and Sound

Gloria – Paulina Garcia
Rodolfo – Sergio Hernandez
Pedro – Diego Fontecilla
Ana – Fabrola Zamora

Director – Sebastian Lelio
Writers – Sebastian Lelio, Gonzalo Maza
Producer – Andrea Carrasco Stuven
Cinematography – Benjamin Echazarel


“By turn heartening and heartbreaking as Gloria turned loneliness into being triumphantly alone.”

“Very engaging, realistic and enjoyable but the noisy kissing was a bit off-putting, though!”

“A woman of our times!”

“What a curious relationship!”

“A good film but not great, being a character-driven drama peppered with out-of-the-blue moments that could make (or break) this somewhat clichéd narrative of a mid-life crisis.”

“Those Latin Americans can surprise us!”

“Enjoyable, if rather racy!”

“Highly entertaining!! And now I shall try to find a suitable clubbing venue in Abingdon!”

“Older grannies are clearly getting younger these days!”

“Gloria in Excelsis or Sic Transit Gloria Mundi? A great version of the Valentine’s Day massacre.”

“Glorious fun – that’s what you get with families and mobile ‘phones. Get on with life – it can be a bitch!”

“Good theme tune”

“A good film but not really my type – good music, though.”

“A film of mostly honest intent marred by the cheesy (and all too obvious) pop-song at the end.”



“A non-event”

“Perhaps something interesting happened in the missing 15 minutes!”


A:3, B:18, C:7, D:6, E:1 to give 61%