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At-A-Glance Film Reviews

Selena (1997)



Reviews and Comments

Jennifer Lopez holds this biography of singer Selena Quintanilla together. Selena was a Mexican American singer whose Mexican music albums were very popular, and, later, an American album hit #1 on the charts. Her father executive produced this film.

The short of it is that the cast is terrific, but the movie is a little light on insight with regard to Selena's music and her professional career. The personal side of Selena is dealt with much more satisfactorily. We become closely familiar with the character and watch the human drama unfold between her and her loved ones with interest. But little light is shed on the nature of her work and newfound fame. When she's on stage, singing, it's good music to listen to, yes, but during those scenes, her character suddenly becomes a mystery. Other than a few scant moments of dialogue, it's hard to gauge how she views her work and success. I'm reluctant to explain myself further, lest I belabor the point, because the personal side of Selena's life is handled very well, and on a very personal level. It's a very good -- but flawed -- film.