María, Llena Eres de Gracia

Maria Full of GraceDrama

Learners’ Notes

  • High rate of speech; not very useful for beginner-level learners
  • Good movie to develop an ear for Colombian Spanish
  • Good movie to note the use of “usted” instead of “tú” among friends and family, a common feature of Colombian Spanish
  • Liberal use of “para qué” for “por qué” throughout the movie
  • Great opportunity to become familiar with Colombia’s socio-economic landscape
brief synopsis

Seventeen-year-old Colombian Maria (Catalina Sandino Moreno) is desperate: pregnant and with a large family to care for, she's forced to leave a demanding job after an altercation with her boss. Needing work as soon as possible, she encounters charming Franklin (John Álex Toro), who offers her a dangerous job as a drug mule. With cocaine pellets in her stomach, Maria flies to New York for the drug drop-off, but finds her new line of work may be far riskier than it initially seemed.

The movie offers an interesting insight into not only Colombia’s way of life but also the average Colombian’s struggle with poverty and drugs. It also explores the first-hand experiences of a teenage girl who is pregnant before marriage while living in an overwhelmingly Catholic Latin America.