Review: 4/5 star
New Latin American Docu-Reality Series ‘Los Montaner’ Is Now Available on Disney+
Love comes in many forms and shapes. And this is no different inside Latin music’s influential family, the Montaners. With a social media audience of over 160 million, it is hard to believe the kind of authority it can harness globally.
Editors at Music Press Asia wanted to see how the Montaners have come together in this reality-formatted 10-episode series to reveal what other reality series couldn’t. What we have discovered is a whole new level of expressionism in the reality series of today. Covering a wide spectrum of matters involving familial relationships, touring, and fame, the episodes have also uncovered how cultural diversity and identity in the Latin music world are heading in the right direction.
Ricardo Montaner (@montaner) is a man of music. Since starting his career in the late 1970s, this Argentine-born Venezuelan singer and songwriter has released about two dozen albums and is estimated to have sold over 100 million records worldwide, hence perhaps the right moment for Disney Plus to enter the picture.
It is obvious that from the onset, the series is made purposefully with the sole aim to showcase how an artistic family actually functions. With Ricardo as head of the household, Marlene – his wife – is undeniably the heart of the family. Their filial sons – Mau and Ricky – are charming and equally unassuming at first glance, they seem to have it all. Counting live performances they have participated in since childhood, their appearance and talent are the jewels on the crown of youth. While life may seem to be substantially prosperous, their hectic live tours post-pandemic are increasingly stretching to the limit.
This is a lengthy film series of how the youths have fled the nest their parents built when life on the road was constant and finances were tight. Although the modern world does pose great conveniences, live music doesn’t get played on its own. And as Mau and Stef prepare for a joint Venezuelan and Jewish wedding, we see them appear in family gatherings and private time alone.
While these scenes are a constant in the series, the discussion surrounds a family where love, laughter and time together are elemental factors to keep things from falling apart. Seemingly bound by invisible strings holding them all together, their lives are interwoven via business partnerships and filial understanding.
Evaluna, their youngest daughter and son-in-law may seem to be the youngest member of the family, but yet they both exude maturity many of us lack or may take an untenable amount of time to learn in the entertainment world. In other words, what we all see is in many ways a form of a sophisticated version of wisdom we lack or have yet to develop.
Larger than life itself, the Montaners seem to have woven a complex and safe environment for their children to grow up in. While some may explain this as aloofness, the Montaners exude a broad acumen when it comes to collaborations and business relations. Ricky, the elder brother emanates a brotherly restraint that rather oddly could only be compared with the behavior of trustworthiness or accountability, while his brother Mau, a boisterous character is anything but that. Nevertheless, Mau’s buffoonery at times is well accepted in comparison to his assiduousness as the second in command to their career as a duo.
The Montaner family playlist:
Indigo by Camilo and Evaluna Montaner. Click here.
Llorar y Llorar by Mau y Ricky, Carin Leon. Click here.
La Gloria de Dios ft. Evaluna Montaner by Ricardo Montaner. Click here.
Amén by Ricardo Montaner, Mau y Ricky, Camilo, Evaluna Montaner. Click here.
Albeit the enviable relationship they have as brothers, it is satisfyingly a friendship that is affectionate and intimate. Their benevolence towards each other is infectious, and could easily be described as endless goodwill and gracious remission.
“The Montaners are enduring as a family. I can’t help but contemplate that business and private relationships are interwoven and that no matter what happens, love champions the hardships and failures we experience in life. These episodes are not just intimate and warm, but also a clever production that poses a warm realization of what friendship can ultimately mean to us,” Nina Golan, editor of TV content [Music Press Asia].
In the context of private family footage from almost five decades in the business, we find Ricardo and Marlene overcoming crises to balance work life and relationships with their children, in-laws and extended families.
This TV series at its core is a somber familial affair that has – at many stages in the family’s growth – posed uncertainty as well as in later years prize-winning efforts to keep it all together. While some may choose to pray for the blessings that have already been bestowed upon them, others celebrate their efforts in making every moment count.
Created by Lex Borrero (Latin Entertainment), starring Ricardo Montaner, Marlene Rodriguez Miranda, Ricky Montaner. Directed by Christ Smith and Santiago A. Zapata (10 episodes, 2022). Production company: NTERTAIN Studios (a Latin content engine) and with creative collaboration by the Disney Branded Television unscripted team.
Filming location: Buenos Airest, Federal District, Argentina and USA.
Release date: 9 Nov 2022.