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Santaluces High School

The Tribe

Santaluces High School

The Tribe

Movie Review: Elemental

Gabriela Martinez
A cool glass of lemonade while Elementals plays on my laptop

The 2023 film Elemental, directed by Peter Sohn, is centered around people made of the four main: water, earth, air, and fire in a city. The story centers on Ember Lumen (Leah Lewis), a fire person.

From the movie’s beginning, we can see the development of fire town starting with Embers’s soon-to-be parents. They struggle with their move into the city, being discriminated against by other elemental peoples due to being fire and considered dangerous or different. Many even go as far as using phrases like “Fire Ball” or “Sparky” as insults towards them.

The pregnant couple struggles to find somewhere to live until they find an old abandoned building in which they eventually settle down and open the Fireplace, their family-owned shop, and make it a living space. Once Ember arrives and the Fireplace is in business, she aspires to own the store someday.

However, after a sudden change of events, she meets Wade Ripple (Mamoudou Athie), a water person who found his way to her through a water pipe. Due to their comedic encounter, The Fireplace is at risk of closing, and Ember does everything she can to prevent it. In doing this, Ember discovers that she genuinely doesn’t want to inherit the shop like she once believed. The situation forces her to find out new parts about herself, especially with the help of Wade; a relationship that in the past she felt forbidden was now helping her find herself.

Through their elemental differences and different upbringings, the two form a romantic bond. In the end, Ember can finally express to her parents what she wants to do with her life, and she begins to take the first step and moves away to a different city to practice her passion.

This film hit close to my heart, providing such a relatable perspective. Coming from immigrant parents myself, I could relate with Ember in the fact that the last thing you want to do as a child of immigrant parents is to let their sacrifices and all of their effort be put to waste. This mentality and the feeling of being trapped in a lifestyle and making something of yourself because your parents gave up so much for you.

This is expressed in the movie as Ember realizes that she wants something different than what her parents had in mind for her, but that would mean abandoning things she holds close to her heart. Leaving such a huge sacrifice starts to tear her apart emotionally, especially seeing her life compared to Wade’s and his family’s.

This movie has much to offer, not just visually, with incredible detail of the city and people, but also with a strong message and a different perspective. This movie displayed several emotions and how Ember learns to interpret her feelings, which is a valuable lesson for many children. It also touched on the topic of how sometimes, to reach your goals and to make your dreams happen, taking a leap of faith can be necessary, like when Ember left her only home to venture out for something she wanted to achieve.

In total, I rate this movie five out of five stars and I recommend it. It’s entertaining with comedy and romance, as well as heartfelt with family love.

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About the Contributor
Gabriela Martinez
Gabriela Martinez, Staff Writer
Hey :), My name is Gaby, and this is my first year on the Tribe. If ever need to find me, I always have my headphones on, and I'm about six-foot-five in height. After fighting guidance for a week for this class, I sure as hell hope that you enjoy my work (in other words, please don't expect much from me :| ). I'm excited to contribute to the Tribe as much as I can!!!   Editor's note: Gaby is never this nice, so disregard that smiley face. She's about five-foot-none. So, if you're ever looking for her, look down. The headphones and guidance parts are the only truthful parts of this bio. Stay safe, you guys. Lies everywhere! =[ - LP

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