Not for those with short attention spans, this movie builds its characters slowly and methodically, with attention to telling visual detail and realistic dialog. Nevertheless, it's a very sexy movie, though not in a lurid sense. Even its most melodramatic elements are so well-grounded that nothing comes off gimmicky or cheap, and its shot-on-video photography is utilized intelligently and intuitively, with a surprisingly broad pallet of colors and textures. With such an overall understated tone, it's easy, on first viewing, to not notice the movie's technical suppleness. Forget the ethnic makeup of its cast, or its low-budget market niche. This is a masterpiece of character study and adept film-making.
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