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10 out of 13 people found the following review useful:

Worth a Look. Surprisingly good.

Author: rgtorre from Somerset, New Jersey
16 March 2003

I never had heard of this movie, or any of the actors(less Robert Patrick) before. It was a slow Sunday morning, and I just happened to have it on the channel showing this movie. I certainly enjoyed this movie much more than I thought I would. It was a very well acted, well-written study of the helplessness one would feel placed in the proverbial situation of a stranger in a strange land. It definitely showed Mexico City in real light, but I thing more importantly, it showed that not everyone in Mexico is corrupt, or dispassionate about helping outsiders. The character of Pedro was especially heroic. I definitely felt the level of frustration the lead character (Mitch) was feeling. Expert direction by Richard Shepard.

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11 out of 15 people found the following review useful:

Under-rated, taut and engaging thriller with moody cinematography...

Author: Lary9 from United States
28 April 2002

I almost didn't rent this one because the pre-visit to Blockbuster and the checks on IMdB indicated that this "new release" was only a 2 star offering. Now...sometimes I'm in the mood for low budget, brooding atmospherics with "indie-like" cinematography and no big stars that challenge my expectations and engage my unabated interest. Sometimes I'm in the mood for DeNiro playing Boris Badanov in Rocky & Bullwinkle (although not too often...once every year or two, maybe.) I enthusiastically recommend this sleeper. It hit me just right…the realistic mood, the gritty shots of Mexico City's underbelly, the briskly developing plot (not too knotty for head scratching but not a formula telegram either) …and I love seeing totally unknown actors act their asses off in a promotionally sleepy but alert screenplay! Jorge Robles [Pedro, the taxi driver with a moral compass on point throughout] was superb. Stacy Edwards was thoroughly believable as Mitch and I cheered as she emerged from her cocoon of bereavement into an `in-your-face-Ninja-warrior' woman who just wouldn't stay down for the count. Robert Patrick was OK but a bit wooden, as he always is in this type of G-man on a wire role, but maybe that's what G-men really act like after all. Anyhow…kudos…and see it. Do Not Be Deterred by the center-weighted 2 star average rating of the masses. After all, what do soccer moms and accountants who rent weekend new releases know about la vie noir?

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6 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

Gritty and graphic

8/10
Author: rps-2 from Bracebridge Ont
27 August 2002

This film will never turn up as an in-flight feature on Mexicana Airlines. It shows the gritty, often ugly reality of Mexico City. Its tale of corruption and intrigue is nothing special. But the film captures the essence of Mexico City --- crowds, bustle, poverty, pollution, crime, machismo, antiquity and always, "la mordida" --- with compelling cinematography and a hauntingly effective Spanish guitar musical background. The camera angles are brilliant. The warm tones of the colour are perfect for the subject. There are many classic closeups of Mexican faces that alone make the film worthwhile. You almost smell the "pollo con aroz." And the amount of Spanish dialogue without subtitles underlines the frustratiions of the film's unilingual main character as she searches for her brother in an alien, puzzling and hostile environment. (Whatever did happen to him by the way?) The plot isn't new. Innocent American searches for missing ( )boyfriend ( )husband ( )wife ( )son ( )daughter ( )other in corrupt foreign capital with no help from double dealing US embassy. But this one is done superbly.

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5 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

Thought-Provoking Thriller!

Author: Ralph Hirschorn (rcvino) from Richmond, MA
27 January 2002

Richard Shepard's fascination with the kidnapping thriller has yielded another successful twisted tale in MEXICO CITY (the other two: MERCY and OXYGEN). Combining deft genre filmmaking chops with real insight into what it means to feel truly vulnerable, in MEXICO CITY, Shepard leads the viewer down a uniquely ravaged road of intrigue, deception, heartbreak and loss. Cinematographer Sarah Cawley is equally at the top of her game, painting many moody tableaus. Editor Adam Lichtenstein ably sets Cawley's rich compositions against each other, adding heft to the story's impact. Rolfe Kent's score completes the circle by perfectly echoing Shepard's search for faith in a seemingly godless world.

Let me qualify by saying that MEXICO CITY is by no means perfect, but if a thought-provoking thriller is what you're after, then see this film.

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4 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

Great View

Author: mboal from Canada
10 August 2002

This movie shows great insight into what Mexico City is actually like. Not necessarily the mugging and shooting, however the shots of the city are outstanding. From the town square to the mix between poverty and wealth, the camera work in the film is unsurpassable. Even down to the green volkswagen beetles, the film is precise and real. Enjoyable movie.

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6 out of 11 people found the following review useful:

So-so? Si, si!

5/10
Author: George Parker from Orange County, CA USA
10 January 2003

In "Mexico City", Edwards plays a woman with recent personal loss who is reluctantly vacationing in the title city with her brother when he disappears. This very mediocre journeyman flick is all about her search for her bro and the intrigues which follow. "Mexico City" seems to lack authenticity (made in Mexico by Americans), paints a rather dismal portrait of the city, has plotholes and foibles galore, and is watered down to a very soft R rating. For those who can overlook these flaws, however, a tale of one woman's determination pitted against corruption and treachery in Mexico awaits. (C)

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3 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

Weak plot, excellent cinematography

3/10
Author: Rodolfo Soriano Núñez (rsnunezmex@aol.com) from New York/Mexico City
9 January 2003

It is a shame that a movie with such a good cinematography as this one had no plot to be supported by the work of Sarah Cawley (cinematography) and Adam Lichtenstein (Film Editing), and above all, no sense of what goes on in Mexico City. The movie tries to be a very realistic depiction of life in city, but it is unable to do it. It is a shame, a lot of film wasted. An American woman tries to find her brother who has been kidnaped. The first account of the story is powerful and interesting, very realistic, but it seems that there was no effort to come with a better narrative of the ordeal, especially when it comes to the issue of the attitudes of the US embassy personnel in Mexico City, when dealing with an issue like this one. Compare, as an example, with Frantic(1988), which deals with a similar issue. Something similar can be said of the role of local authorities. Compare, as an example, with Todo el Poder (1999). The movie is worth watching if you want to get a sense of the looks of the City itself, paying little or no attention to the rather weak "plot" and the many twists that require a rather extensive suspension of disbelief. Who is going to believe that a Mexican patrol from Mexico City is going to go all the way to catch the main characters to the Mexico-US border? And that this policeman is going to be able to use its radio from the border to Mexico City! Only the producers of this movie. It is worth mentioning that unlike Frida and other movies about Mexico at least in these one Mexicans talk Spanish.

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