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The Search for the Truth

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Essay title: The Search for the Truth

The Search for the Truth

Alfonso Cuaron's Y tu mama tambien (2001) tells a realistic coming of age tale of Tenoch and Julio, two teenaged Mexican boys with raging hormones. The story is told from a third person omniscient point of view, reminiscent of many French new wave films, so we are provided with extra information about the characters and the context that we would not normally receive from the characters themselves. The story starts out with the boys having sex with their respective girlfriends before the girls leave to go to the airport for their trip to Europe. After this it is revealed that Tenoch is the son of Mexico's Secretary of State and that Tenoch and Julio are invited to the wedding of Jessica, Tenoch's cousin, and the president is going to be in attendance. At the wedding, the two boys try to woo an older Spanish woman named Luisa by trying to convince her to come with them on a trip to a beach called Heaven's Mouth; which to the extent of their knowledge does not exist. Luisa finds out that her husband has been cheating on her and decides to take the boys up on their offer. Later on, the boys choose to tell Luisa about their group, the "Charolastras", and its manifesto. The manifesto contains things characteristic of teenage boys such as drug use and sex, but the two most significant rules are "Truth is cool but unattainable" and "You shall not screw another Charolastra's girl". They all stay at a hotel and Luisa ends up having sex with Tenoch; Julio gets angry because of this and tells Tenoch that he slept with his girlfriend. This puts a fissure in their friendship and Luisa decides that it is her job to right the wrong, and sleeps with Julio as well. Luisa sleeping with Julio provokes Tenoch to tell Julio that he too has slept with his girlfriend and instead of bringing them back together, Luisa widens the gap. The trio eventually gets to a beach and meets a fisherman named Chuy who gives them a tour of the beaches and they realize that Heaven's Mouth is indeed a real beach. Luisa calls Jano and wishes him the best and then the threesome end up drinking a lot and having sex, during which Julio and Tenoch kiss each other. In the end, Tenoch and Julio travel home and Luisa decides to stay with Chuy and his family. In the final scene, we see a more "mature" Julio and Tenoch catching up in a cafe and we find out that Luisa had, had cancer and knew about it the entire time she was with them. Tenoch leaves and the two never meet again.

Cuaron's Film is composed in a rather linear manner as we follow the protagonists in their journey toward Heaven's Mouth; the story is seemingly straight forward. At the same time however there is an omniscient narrator that provides us with a lot of information that grants us further insight into the story. By interpreting and understanding the thoughts that the narrator is giving us, we can deduce the meaning of the story. In doing this there are many questions that must be posed. Why do the boys decide to make a manifesto for the Charolastras if they are not going to adhere to it? Why does Luisa join the boys on the trip? Who is the narrator and how does he contribute to the story? Is there perhaps a deeper meaning than what appears on the surface? Finding the answers to these questions is crucial to understanding the meaning of the story as a whole. At first glance, it seems clear that Alfonso Cuaron's Y tu mama tambien is just your average teenaged road trip comedy. It seems to just be about a trip taken by 2 ignorant adolescent boys as they think and act based on sexual desire. Accompanying them on the trip is an attractive, older woman who is fed up with her cheating husband and this leads to many crazy situations. If we look closer, however, we can see that this is not the only thing that is there. I will argue that the boy's journey is not just about sexual desire, but also serves to reveal a message about discovering the truth by juxtaposing appearance versus reality. I will also explain that the film does not just give details about the boy's story but instead, gives details about many people's stories in Mexico. In this essay I will show that by analyzing the characters and figuring out what the narrator is trying to tell us, we can figure out what Cuaron is trying to show us. He attempts to show us that in order to find truth in life it is important to look at the past, present and future; and most of the time the truth is harder to take because what we see in our heads is much better.

After viewing this film for the first time it seems obvious that the story is about two adolescent boys who are driven by their sexual desires. Right from the beginning we can see that the boy's act based on their animalistic teenage sex drives. The movie opens with a slow dolly from a dark hallway

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