We went and saw Bella last Wednesday with my sister and husband and our newest addition, Maria. We have a tradition of going to one movie very soon after each child is born which means that we have been to about seven movies in the last ten years.
Bella is a good movie. Not a great movie, but a good movie. The message, if not beat-you-over-the-head obvious, does lean in a pro-life direction and you do come away happy in the end. I actually think that this helps the movie. It isn’t a soap box sermon or a legal brief. It’s a story about ordinary people and the difficulties they face.
Jose was a rising “football” star who had just signed a multi-million deal with a US team when he ends up in jail for running over a child. After getting out he works as the head chef at his brother’s restaurant. The scenes in the kitchen and the dishes prepared had me ready to go spend several hundred dollars I don’t have on dinner.
Nina is a waitress at the restaurant who ends up pregnant by someone who wants to “take care of it”. Jose convinces her to let him adopt the baby instead.
My favorite parts of the movie are the food, the interaction with Jose’s family, the food, the every-day look at New York City and the food.
The movie suffers from some editing problems that leave you with a series of vignettes instead of a flowing story and the end if the movie makes you wonder if there was half an hour lost during production.
In spite of the editing problems, the story is warming, the message is positive, and the characters are real.