Selena | Teen Ink


April 15, 2019
By Anonymous

Selena is a movie revolving around the famous Mexican-American singer, Selena Quintanilla, as the name suggests. The movie acts as a biographical drama and includes the entire life of Selena for the most part. She's born in Lake Jackson, Texas, and from an early age, her father tried to ensure that she would grow up to be musical-oriented. Because her father, Abraham, attempted to make it as a musician when he was growing up, he understands the struggles, especially considering that they are Mexican-American, which Abraham will eventually explain to her for being difficult, since they aren't completely accepted by either group. Americans don't completely accept them, despite how they live in America, and Mexicans don't completely accept them, because their Spanish isn't the greatest and how they aren't completely pure with Mexican descent. Abraham presses the matter further, even saying that Mexican-Americans have a more difficult job than other immigrants, because their country is just across the border. This acts as a fuel for Abraham to ensure that his kids practice as much as possible, because after seeing Selena's raw talent, after she sings along to his guitar-playing, he discovers that she has the ability to possibly break through barriers and be beloved by both Mexicans and Americans for her singing. Selena starts out singing in a band that her father created that's made up of her brother and sister, and the group starts out by playing at tiny venues, including a small restaurant that her family owned for a tiny bit of time. As Selena gets older, she becomes more famous and utilizes her talent more, and in the process, she begins to break through all of the barriers and begins to forever leave her mark on the music industry, allowing others to eventually follow her footsteps.
 Selena proves to be an entertaining movie that is both relentlessly engaging and has the ability to educate the world about the unique story of Selena's rise to fame. The beginning of the movie manages to flawlessly introduce audiences to Selena, transitioning from her as a star to how it all started, which was when she was just a little girl. The middle of the movie progresses everything along, while also having Selena grow up, making audiences feel like they're watching Selena age before their very eyes. The enticing ending of the movie manages to honor Selena as both a person and for her lasting legacy, which is exactly what the purpose of this portion of the movie was. The actual conclusion of the movie is quite brilliant and symbolic, while also aiding to showcase how Selena impacted the entire world, not just the universe inside of the movie. 

 Selena takes place in basically the format of a biography, so educating others about the life of Selena was expected. However, the movie elevates this concept to the next level, and not only do viewers learn more about Selena, but they actually become emotionally invested in her as a character and a person, due to the likability of the singer. Selena is portrayed as a relatable singer, so it shouldn't be surprising that audiences truly feel for the character for the majority of the film. 

 Selena manages to contrast between Selena's singing as a little girl to when she was a star to seamlessly demonstrate how her childhood impacted her future in a manner that is sure to please. It becomes quite clear that Selena's father laid down the foundation for her stardom, and this allows there to be a tremendous amount of character development throughout. Seeing as Selena is the star of the movie, like she was in real life, showcasing her growth as a human being is crucial to watchers being capable of understanding her as a person.

 Selena greatly benefits from an unbelievable performance from Jennifer Lopez. Even though Jennifer is a massive star today, this movie was her big break and for good reason. Despite how there are other solid performances throughout, her role is the only one that shines for being so notable. Jennifer brings spunk, emotion, and intensity to the character of Selena, and she is literally able to transform into the singer, making it darn near impossible for viewers to differentiate between Jennifer's version and the real one, because her performance is just that spot-on. 

 Even though Selena is a fan-favorite by many, critics strangely didn't love the movie. Rotten Tomatoes gave the movie an alright 67%, which feels way too low for a movie that accomplishes so much. However, an absolutely outstanding 95% of Google users liked the movie, which is just such a remarkable mark, and helps to support the idea of how just about anyone and everyone should watch this fantastic movie.

 Selena is beautifully told and will definitely surpass any and all expectations. The movie deserves to be seen by the entire world, because Selena's story is one that needs to be told. Not only does this movie depict the entirety of Selena's life, but it also does Selena Quintanilla justice. 

The author's comments:

"We have to be more Mexican than the Mexicans and more American than the Americans, both at the same time! It's exhausting!" - Abraham Quintanilla/Selena's father

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