Nicely cold and sparse, although could have pushed it further
A young boy in need of money for his mother's medicine, turns to an overly friendly man who is offering a job as a mule. With the man helping the boy with water, a flare gun in case of trouble, and of course a key of cocaine, the boy is sent to cross the fence into the US.
This short film doesn't have the best title if you speak Spanish and I do rather wish I had not Google translated it before watching since it sort of hints at the content of the film a film it is better to come into cold. The film stutters a little at the start as it rushes to set up the background, not really giving the viewer much time to buy into the family, or how quickly the situation unfolds as it does. Once it is over this though it strips down even more, to leave us with very little but the journey and the risks. This continues until a good ending that acts as a summary of the reality of the cartels moving the drugs. It is a sobering film in that regard and if anything I would have liked it more stripped down and bare in its honest brutality.
It is technically well made, with good emptiness in the main film, and a nice contrast between life one side of the border and the other not the most subtle perhaps as it cuts across, but effective nonetheless. The performances are not the strongest; sadly Manny himself is a bit of a blank, but maybe this everyman innocence is part of the casting decision to have? I do think it could have pushed harder on the nerves and the heart by being colder and more clinical, however even as it is, it is effective.
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