8.1/10
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Herod's Law (1999)

La ley de Herodes (original title)
Mexico, 1949. The fable of a janitor turned Mayor on a little town lost in the Mexican desert, who gradually realizes how far his new acquainted power and corruption can get him.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (story) | 4 more credits »

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20 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
López (as Pedro Armendáriz)
Delia Casanova ...
Rosa
Juan Carlos Colombo ...
Ramírez
Alex Cox ...
Gringo
...
Pancho
Noemí García ...
Secretaria
Guillermo Gil ...
Cura
...
Gobernador
Leticia Huijara ...
Luis de Icaza ...
Alcalde Alfredo García
Eugenia Leñero ...
Esposa del nuevo alcalde
Eduardo López Rojas ...
Doctor
Yari Lorenzo ...
Esmeralda
Pedro Lorza ...
Cadáver
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Storyline

After the corrupt former Mayor is killed by the peasants, poor janitor Juan Vargas is appointed new Mayor of a desert town in central Mexico. Although he tries to bring the motto of the ruling party to town (modernity, peace and progress) he realizes soon that there's nothing to do against corruption... except to become corrupt. Step by step, helped by his pistol, Juan Vargas becomes the law and the worst Major in the town's history. Written by Maximiliano Maza <mmaza@campus.mty.itesm.mx>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Crime | Mystery

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence, sexuality and language | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

18 February 2000 (Mexico)  »

Also Known As:

Herod's Law  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This movie's release was forbidden for several years. From the time that filming started, the Mexican government wasn't very happy about it; mainly because it presented a bad image of that administration. The filmmakers fought back, and the conflict reached the press. So the movie had to be released, to avoid rumors about political censorship. See more »

Quotes

Juan Vargas: No me hables en inglés hijo de la chingada; ahora si, pinche gringo, se acabó la deuda externa!
See more »

Connections

References The Young and the Damned (1950) See more »

Soundtracks

La cama de piedra
Performed by Salvador "El Negro" Ojeda
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User Reviews

 
Latin America Appreciated!
7 June 2004 | by (Panama) – See all my reviews

All the elements are here: bureaucracy, corruption, hypocrisy, ignorance, ambivalence, revolt, arrogance, machismo, and many more combine to make this film so realistic and satirical that it is hilarious.

It is always amazing how often patronage and the perception of power combine to corrupt. 'Herod's Law' really is Latin America at its core. The setting and the veracity of the portrait couldn't be better. As true today as it was in the 1940's, Latin American politics revolve on a wheel of indifference to the norm, of corruption and an incestuous political bureaucracy bred to deceive and obscure. Then you have the periodic explosive reactions to too much tolerance of so little honesty.

Brilliant montage of all the right elements.


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