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A Cab for Three More at IMDbPro »Taxi para tres (original title)

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7 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

analysis of new chilean film

Author: peteito
21 November 2003

As a foreigner studying new Chilean film it was this film which impressed me more than any. The low production costs, gloomily atmospheric cinematography and sparse mise-en-scene submerge the viewer in Santiago's poorer nieghbourhoods from the opening scene until the last. The film explores the breakdown of the family unit, the lure of crime for those poverty stricken sectors of society documented, but ultimately is a triumph of morality which restores the viewer's faith in the Chilean person.

This film shot Alejandro Trejo to fame as Taxista Ulises, and his relationships with his family and with the petty criminals who use him as their chauffeur underpin the narrative. One can see why a family man becomes tempted by the get rich quick option of small robberies when his family live in such poverty (his son asks for coca-cola, and is told thats too expensive, theres only tap-water. This family cannot buy into the capitalist dream and are swept away. Ulises, like many poorer citizens, turns to crime. The social question raised by Lubbert, a man exiled during the Military regime, is 'Perhaps wealth should be distributed more equally, then men like Ulises would not so easily become criminals.'). Also, one can see why Ulises is driven to infidelity, and the strain of poverty, and the suspicion of his crime, begin to show in his relationship with his wife.

This film exudes brooding social decline, even thirteen years after the fall of the Military Regime. The dry, sun beaten expanses of Santiago's poorer Western barrios are made undeniabley Chilean by imagery of the Plaza de Armas, Churrascos, and dialogues bursting with Chilean slang. The moody soundtrack of Vasconcelos adds a melanchony feel of despair to the three main character's situations. This is a Chilean film, documenting social problems, and doing so without indulging in hyperbolic comedy, as the two most successful films in Chilean history, Sexo Con Amor and El Chacotero Sentimental (at least two thirds), did so memorably.

Lubbert has returned to Chile in the new climate of social freedom, looked around him, and seen there remain serious social problems. The tension is always there, even if at times lighthearted, but the overriding theme is that of social criticism, and Lubbert has realized that he doesn't need to make people have sex on top of washing machines (a la Sexo Con Amor) to make Chileans go and see a Chilean film.

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5 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

A funny and serious movie

Author: Rainer Uphoff from Granada, Spain
5 July 2002

Taxi para 3 (A cab for 3) is one of the best films I have had the opportunity to watch recently. It shows the "real" Chile through real life characters, The story is really entertaining, the characters are convincing and well defined, but its not a "feelgood movie". It's a deeper look into the humanity of the everyday struggle for survival of ordinary people who can be drawn into unplanned dramatic situations.

It got the Golden Shell at the Spanish San Sebastian film festival, sending the Spanish superproduction "Juana la Loca" to a humilliating second price - sometimes justice happens and a great, but low budget movie can still win over an expensive production promoted by a major distributor.

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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

A good and pleasant movie.

Author: Boba_Fett1138 from Groningen, The Netherlands
27 November 2006

This big Chilean box office success is a great pleasant light movie with some serious undertones in it.

This movie shows that there are some talented directors in South America, that can make some great movies, once they're giving the chance- and right tools. Every now and then a movie like this one goes overseas, to be seen by the rest of the world. This is one of those movies and it truly deserves to be seen by the world.

The budget is obviously low but the filmmakers did their best with the resources they had. It gives the movie a good and professional look and makes the quality of the movie quite high, despite the budget. It once more proofs that all you truly need to make a great movie with, is creative talent.

The movie begins quite simple with a simple premise; A poor taxi driver with a big family to support is given a choice from 2 small time crooks: drive them around while they rob, or get locked up in the trunk. It probably sounds like this is the Chilean "Collateral" but it obviously is not. This movie chooses a light and comedy like approach, which makes the movie pleasant to watch. As the movie progresses the movie however also gets some more serious undertones about family values, everyday struggles and other dramatic situations. It makes the movie more than just a fun, light pleasant movie to watch but also one with a great underlying story, that is well written- and used in the movie.

But above all this movie mainly remains a pleasant one. Despite the dramatic and serious undertones, the movie always remains a comedy. It makes the movie pleasant but at the same time not at the costs of the overall effectiveness of the story.

The acting in this movie feels very natural and it makes you care about the characters and make them all realistic ones as well.

In my experience, an excellent movie to get introduced for the first time to Chilean cinema.


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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Taxi driver

Author: jotix100 from New York
3 October 2006

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

A taxi driver's worst nightmare is being assaulted by a passenger. Imagine Ulises' surprise as he is attacked by two low lives in a seedy part of town when his car stops running. Chavelo and Coto, are two desperate men who make a living mugging and committing petty crimes in Santiago. The pair, on their way to perform a few robberies give Ulises and alternative, either drive, or get in the trunk of the car. He decides to drive them.

Chavelo and Coto begin their crime spree, as Ulises drives them all over town. They even offer Ulises a cut in the money they have taken from their illegal activities, but he refuses. Ulises, who lives in poverty with his wife and grown up children, is basically a honest man. All he wants is to finish paying his car in order to work; he also make an honest living to support his family.

The two robbers suddenly realize they can get to Ulises when they offer him money. A transformed Ulises suddenly feels tempted to go along with the Chavelo and Coto, but he makes a serious mistake, one that will bring him to the attention of the police that are investigating the robberies: he brags about what he went through to his colleagues, who will tell the police. Padilla, the police detective knows Ulises is involved, even if he is an unwilling party. The second mistake was paying another installment on the taxi.

This Chilean film, one of the most popular movies in recent years, is a cautionary tale for would be robbers, in that no matter how one looks at it, crime is wrong and it will be the downfall of anyone who thinks he can get away with his evil doings forever. Orlando Lubbert, the writer and director of "Taxi para 3" shows a great affinity for the material. His message is that Ulises can't get away covering for the Chavelo and Coto, knowing what they are doing harm to him and his family.

Alejandro Trejo, whose first film this is, shows a naturalness that perhaps a trained professional actor wouldn't project. He is the whole reason for watching the movie. Daniel Jimenez, who plays Chavelo, has an unpleasant voice that suits his character. Fernando Gomez Rovira is Coto, the simple minded petty thief being coached by Chavelo. Cristian Quezada has a couple of good moments as the inspector who figures out who is who in the story.

Since the film language uses Chilean street slang, we saw the English subtitled version because even though we are fluent in the language, for all practical purposes the characters were speaking Chinese. Orlando Lubbert shows great talent and an eye for bringing to life the people in his movie.

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4 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

A bitter comedy of real world

Author: Ostomedo2 ( from Santiago, Chile
15 November 2001

Taxi para 3 (Taxi for 3) is about the sad life of many people in Chile. But is not a sad movie or a politic one. The curious and sometimes funny relation between two thieves and a cab driver shows all the moral misery in Chile nowadays. The three leading roles are just brilliant, and the script is very smart and well written. The line: "¿Volante o maleta?" (Wheel or trunk?) when the thieves are kidnapping the cab driver, is one of the most powerful in modern Chilean cinema, and resumes the world that Orlando Lubbert shows us. The only weak point is the photography, but doesn't bother watching this good movie with a good story, good acting and a good soundtrack.

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Drive and enjoy the easy money.

Author: Pablo (pngueen) from Valdivia, Chile
21 September 2002

Well, this is one of the most popular chilean movies along with "el Chacotero sentimental". But being popular does not mean to be good.

The film is an easy watching light study of the lower chilean social types everyday living. A little funny sometimes, but blatantly insane others, the central plot line is to grab or not an opportunity to become a thieve and make some money and when in to it, finding a way to get out.

There's a little political "taste" of the years 1973-1989 that you just can't bypass (like the smiling-guy-from-gestapo attitude of the police), but it won't matter too much if you're not that old.

So, you should watch it, and see how difficult can it be to live when you have no chances.

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Isn't a bad movie

Author: sirkraken from Miami, USA
30 March 2002

That's all, this is not a bad movie, neither an excellent one, but I think is exciting to see another country films and learning new things in relative. I saw this in Chile, and there it was a success, just like "El Chacotero Sentimental" (that is a bad one), as a summary, In countries like Chile there are good film makers and we have to appreciate that, but I'm still waiting a very good one from Chile.

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Very good!

Author: rfmadness from Santiago, Chile
14 October 2001

"Taxi para 3" is the best Chilean movie of all times, better than "El Chacotero Sentimental" (other good Chilean movie). The music is amazing, and the story is really really great. It's and excellent mixture between drama and comedy, with a surprising end. Very good for a Chilean film!

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1 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

The evil in a cab

Author: juancarlosrodriguezpavez from Santiago, Chile
1 April 2002

This film was the most popular in Chile in the 2001, but this film is not the best. It is a travel for the Santiago Underground, where survivor is the life motive every day. A intimate see to the problems of a taxi driver, father and husband, where the money is the matter and the moral not pay the checks

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