Honduran teenager Sayra reunites with her father, an opportunity for her to potentially realize her dream of a life in the U.S. Moving to Mexico is the first step in a fateful journey of unexpected events. Written by
Cary Fukunagra spent two years researching the film, spending time with people on the trains and with gangsters in Central America. He also used two gang members to script edit making the slang and language as up to date and realistic as possible See more »
The teardrop tattoo on el Casper's right eye is missing in two consecutive scenes on the top of the train but is visible on his face throughout the movie both before and after these scenes on the train. Interestingly, the tattoo is an important identifying mark/symbol in the movie and is specifically highlighted by gang members when asking locals if they have seen Casper as they try to find him and hunt him down. See more »
Back home, my friend Clarissa made me see this crazy neighbor, Doña Eleanor, you know, like witchcraft? She smoked this puro, then told me with her freaky voice that I'd make it to the U.S. but not in God's hand, perhaps in the Devil's.
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Let's be clear from the outset, this is a dark, bleak and violent movie. The episodes in-between the on-screen savagery, consist of a lot of regret, anxiety and a deep, deep sadness.
Having said that, I also think that this is one of the most important movies I have seen in quite awhile, buried unfortunately amidst the clutter of beginning-of-the-year garbage releases and the upcoming summer blockbusters. I wish this movie had a much higher profile, in fact I think that this movie should be required viewing in high-schools all across the US and Canada.
It should also be seen by all those people who think about immigrants as a pest and as parasites who come to take away their jobs and be a drain on their resources, abusing the social system or whatever. The same people who watch Lou Dobbs and his "one man crusade" to save America from the invading plague of illegals. The minute-men who gleefully think that the wall now separating the US from Mexico is the greatest thing since the pyramids. The same people that after having spewed their vitriol, hatred and bile against immigrants have no problem with Juan mowing their lawn and Consuela looking after their snot-nosed mortally obese children, and Miguel picking-up all the s*it they leave in the streets, malls and every other place one can throw garbage in.
Maybe, just maybe, watching this movie will at least give them a glimpse into the lives, backgrounds and destinies of these people, who are abused, mistreated and forgotten by almost everybody, people who basically have come to symbolize a type of disposable human garbage, that truly are without a face, an identity and "sin nombre", without name. Perhaps we could all come to understand what it is that drives these waves of humanity to risk it all for even the promise of a better future. Then we could all come to realize that "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness" are not exclusively American values, but rather universal values to which all people aspire to.
Even amidst all the doom and gloom of the movie there are some sublime moments of beauty, humanity and yes even hope. It was quite hard at times for me to watch this movie, not because of what I saw, but because I can relate to what I saw and be reminded of a time in my life I wish I could forget, but know I can't. It will be part of me until the day I die. I want people to learn and understand instead of being so quick to judge and dismiss the plight of other fellow human beings.
WHAT WOULD YOU DO IF THE SITUATION WAS REVERSED?
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