Media For Lunch: Little Alfonso Cuarón

Alfonso Cuarón

Cuarteto para el fin del Mundo 

(Quartet for the End of the World)

 (1983) 

Alfonso Cuarón was once just another film student like so many others. That is, until his was kicked out of Mexico’s CUEC (Centro Universitario de Estudios Cinematográficos) along with his close friend and fellow director Luis Estrada (El Infierno). While the reasons for their expulsion are no doubt complex, Cuarón summed it up by saying he and Luis were “un par de mamones” (a couple of suckers). Guess that’s a good enough reason as any.

Cuarteto para el fin del Mundo (Quartet for the End of the World) was Cuarón’s second year project at the CUEC, and follows a depressive clarinet player through a fourteen day funk in which he plays with a turtle, throws some balloons out the window and sleeps in his closet. While Cuarteto is no Gravity, tell me that the extended zoom-out at 13:04 doesn’t echo Sandra Bullock silently drifting off into space in Gravity’s dizzying opening sequence. Some of Cuarón’s feature films include Les Pyramides Bleues (1986),  Romero(1989),  Sólo con tu pareja (1991),  A Little Princess (1995),  Great Expectations (1998),  Y Tu Mamá También (2001), Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaba (2001), Crónicas     (2004), The Assassination of Richard Nixon    (2004),  Black Sun (2005), Children of Men (2006), Pan’s Labyrinth (2006), Year of the Nail (2007), Rudo y Cursi (2006), Biutiful (2006) and Gravity (2013). 

– Myrna E. Duarte

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