The Maid (2009 film)

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The Maid
La Nana 2009.jpg
Theatrical film poster
Directed by Sebastián Silva
Produced by Gregorio González
Written by Pedro Peirano
Sebastián Silva
Starring Catalina Saavedra
Claudia Celedón
Alejandro Goic
Distributed by Elephant Eye Films
Release date
  • August 13, 2009 (2009-08-13)
Running time
95 minutes
Country Chile
Language Spanish

The Maid (Spanish: La Nana) is a 2009 comedy-drama film, directed by Sebastián Silva and co-written by Silva and Pedro Peirano. It has won numerous awards since its premiere at the 25th Annual Sundance Film Festival. The film has had much critical acclaim, particularly for Catalina Saavedra's award-winning performance as the lead character.

Plot synopsis[edit]

Raquel (Saavedra) has served as the maid for the Valdes family for over 23 years.[1] She treats her employers, Pilar (Celedón) and Edmundo (Goic) with the utmost loyalty and respect. She gets along well with their teenage son, Lucas (Agustín Silva) but clashes with their headstrong daughter, Camila (García-Huidobro). When Raquel begins to suffer dizzy spells, due to an excessive use of chlorine for household cleaning, Pilar decides to hire additional maids to assist Raquel in her daily chores. The fiercely territorial Raquel resents this and engages in a series of increasingly desperate attempts to drive away maid after maid, including the younger Lucy (Loyola), in order to maintain her position in the household.[2]


Critical reception[edit]

The critics' response has been very positive. According to the National Board of Review, The Maid was one of 2009's five best Best Foreign-Language Films; also, it was nominated for the 67th Annual Golden Globe Awards consideration honoring 2009 achievements for the same category,[3] and "AyAyAyAy" (the film's main theme song) was one of the 63 songs from eligible feature-length motion pictures contending for nominations in the Original Song category for the 82nd Academy Awards.[4] Film critic David Parkinson called it "an exceptional study of the emotional investment that domestics make in the families they serve. Saavedra is mesmerizing as she shifts from subservient to scheming." [5] Despite the film's great success, the film wasn't chosen as Chile's submission to the 82nd Academy Awards. Instead, Miguel Littin's Dawson Isla 10 was sent, but the film didn't make the short-list.

Chicago Sun Times film critic Roger Ebert described the film as a "unpredictable, naturalistic gem."[6]

The film currently holds a 94% approval on the film critics' site Rotten Tomatoes. Rotten Tomatoes wrote of the critics' consensus, "Catalina Saavedra's devastating performance would be reason enough to see The Maid but Sebastian Silva's empathetic direction and finely tuned script only add to the movie's pleasing heft."[7]


Year Event Recipient Award Result
2009 Cartagena Film Festival Sebastián Silva Critics Award - Best Film Won
Catalina Saavedra Golden India Catalina - Best Actress Won
Sebastián Silva Golden India Catalina - Best Film Nominated
Gotham Film Awards Gregorio González (producer)
Sebastián Silva (director)
Best Feature Nominated
Catalina Saavedra Breakthrough Actor/Actress Won
Off Plus Camera Film Festival Poland Gregorio González (producer)
Sebastián Silva (director)
Cracow Film Award (Best Film) Won
Sarasota Film Festival Best Narrative Film Won
Fribourg International Film Festival Sebastián Silva (director) Talent Tape Award Won
Paris Cinema International Film Festival Audience Award Won
Taipei Film Festival Special Mention New Talent Competition
3rd Audience Award
Latin American Film Festival Critics Award Won
Elcine First Prize - Best Film Won
Sundance Film Festival Awards Grand Jury Prize: World Cinema - Dramatic Won
Catalina Saavedra Special Jury Prize (For Acting): World Cinema - Dramatic Won
Satellite Awards 2009 Best Actress – Motion Picture Drama Nominated
Sebastián Silva (director) Best Foreign Language Film Won Tied with Broken Embraces
2010 NAACP Image Awards Best Foreign Language Film Nominated
Golden Globes Awards Best Foreign Language Film Nominated


  1. ^ "The Maid (2009)". Retrieved 2009-10-23. 
  2. ^ Chang, Justin (2009-01-24). "The Maid (2009)". Retrieved 2009-10-23. 
  3. ^ "Nominations & Winners". The Hollywood Foreign Press Association. Retrieved 2009-12-15. 
  4. ^ "63 Original Songs Tune Up For 2009 Oscar". The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Retrieved 2009-12-17. 
  5. ^ Radio Times, 29 September-5 October 2012, p.42
  6. ^ "CIFF 2009: The winners! And our reviews". Chicago Sun-Times. Retrieved 2013-08-24. 
  7. ^ "The Maid". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 2013-02-05. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
The King of Ping Pong
Sundance Grand Jury Prize: World Cinema Dramatic
Succeeded by
Animal Kingdom