Rita Moreno: Just a Girl Who Decided to Go for It (2021)
90 min | Documentary, Biography
Largely directly through current day interviews with the subject at age eighty-seven, a profile of Rita Moreno is presented, she who in many respects outwardly epitomizes the American dream in being a handful of EGOTs (Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, Tony winner) and thus successful, and achieving that dream as a somewhat visible "immigrant" to the US (not technically so in being a Puerto Rican, which is part of the US) from humble beginnings. She dispels many of those views in a discussion of her career and her life. Beyond the want to be a movie star and being a proverbial triple threat (actor, singer, dancer) in the entertainment business, she talks about the difficulties she faced: being subjected to the proverbial casting couch and being sexually assaulted above and beyond by those in authority; being typecast in pretty, immigrant roles which required her solely to look beautiful and speak in nondescript accents, even after her Oscar win; the broadening of her career to do the work that was of interest as opposed to that may have been high profile; and the resulting view of her own non-self-worth in how she was viewed especially as a Latina in the US. She further discusses how that view of herself led to a Catch-22 in relationships, getting into them in her own negative view of herself, and they in turn exacerbating that view. Arguably the two most high profile are the long term abusive one with Marlon Brando, and the forty-five year marriage to Leonard Gordon until his death. Her activism is also discussed which is an outcome of her life, it largely in areas of women and minority rights.