Bless Me, Ultima
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Bless Me, Ultima
Director Carl Franklin (One False Move, Devil in a Blue Dress) helmed this adaptation of Rudolfo Anaya's controversial novel about a young boy and the enigmatic healer who opens his eyes to the wonders of the spiritual realm. New Mexico: the early '40s. As the entire world is plunged into war for a second time, Antonio Márez (Luke Ganalon) grapples with the harsh realities all around him. His life is forever changed by the sudden arrival of Ultima (Miriam Colon), a woman with supernatural healing powers, who has come to his family on a mission of kindness. As Ultima inspires Antonio to… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 71%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Aassured, sensitive, and commendably unpretentious."
‑ Ben Sachs, Chicago Reader
"Theater firebrand and big-screen presence Miriam Colon portrays Ultima with a minimum of fuss and a gorgeous supply of elder authority."
‑ Lisa Kennedy, Denver Post
"A thoughtful, sentimental fable."
‑ Eric D. Snider,
"Erring only slightly on the Hallmark side."
‑ Kelly Vance, East Bay Express
"a profound story told in a deceptively simple way. Deceptive, but curiously suitable for a film about identity, belief, and the nature both good and evil in all their guises."
‑ Andrea Chase, Killer Movie Reviews
"The lyrical book is filled with touches of magical realism. On the other hand, the movie is sorely lacking in both magic and realism. It's all very empty and blah."
‑ Randy Cordova, Arizona Republic
"Writer-director Carl Franklin offers up a tone of heightened reverence that weighs down the material, but there are small, lovely moments when the magic realism approaches the magical."
‑ Peter Rainer, Christian Science Monitor
"... bogged down by its deliberate pace, reliance on Catholic symbolism, and its one-dimensional characters."
‑ Todd Jorgenson,
"The low-level magical realism never gels with the coming-of-age drama."
‑ Jamie S. Rich, Oregonian
"Based on the novel of the same name by Rudolfo Anaya, "Bless Me, Ultima" is a magical compilation of family, life, death, religion and the meaning of it all."
‑ Jeanne Kaplan, Kaplan vs. Kaplan
"An offbeat slice of Americana will intrigue thoughtful moviegoers."
‑ Stephen Farber, Hollywood Reporter
"A deeply satisfying feat of storytelling, "Bless Me, Ultima" makes a difficult task look easy."
‑ Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times
"[Director Carl] Franklin is sensitive to the way boys interact, bump chests, bicker, and bond-just as he is to how adults justify their hypocrisy and excuse their failures."
‑ Sean Axmaker, Seattle Weekly
"It knows exactly what kind of film it is -- unfortunately, what kind of film it is, is an unimaginatively directed coming-of-age tale with hardly any narrative momentum."
‑ Mike Scott, Times-Picayune
""Bless Me, Ultima" is a beautifully photographed film, but it has a lot of problems...sketchy character development, but the bigger issue is the film's disjointed flow."
‑ David Kaplan, Kaplan vs. Kaplan
More reviews for Bless Me, Ultima on Rotten Tomatoes