Saturday, May 6, 2017

DESIERTO (2016)



Directed & Edited By: Jonas Cuaron 
Written By: Jonas Cuaron & Mateo Garcia 
Cinematography By: Damian Garcia 


Cast: Jeffrey Dean Morgan , Gael Garcia Bernal, Alondra Hidalgo, Marco Perez Lew Temple, Diego Catano 


A group of people trying to cross the border from Mexico into the United States encounter a man who has taken border patrol duties into his own racist hands.


This film is a tight simple thriller. That is appealing in it's simplicity. Not too much to think about or question. Shot all out in the open no indoor scenes.

Like a horror film it has an unstoppable villain who works as a slasher. Who we know very little about. Whose reason for his killings are very vague, you just know he is evil. Played by Jeffrey Dean Morgan (who is becoming familiar in these types of roles which seem to fit better Than the anti-hero in action films usually developed from graphic novels)

As we watch him murder people who are sneaking across the border for no real personal reason, of course the film wants us to assume that he is trying to keep them out of the country and doesn't see them as human beings just prey. At least that is what might be hinted at. As he seems to be doing it out of patriotism

Except that he is kind of disrespectful to the border cops also.

The film tries to provoke a social or political message of sorts. That really hits home in this current American climate. As this might be the type of film our current government would love that is until the ending. I can only assume this. Though it is more a remote survival movie. Where the characters play cat and mouse throughout.

There is plenty of graphic violence. Even as the victims are anonymous. Except for the fact that you feel sorry for them as they don't deserve their fates. Especially for just seeking a new And better life for themselves.

The film is still a tight mostly dialogueless grilled that pumps itself up with impending doom and dread throughout. As there is no humor or true happiness here.

It's admirable what is done in this film with a simple premise that does so much and how full the film feels. It would be nice if he film had a little more substance. Though it is quite entertaining without it.

The film definitely has style and luckily does Amy go overboard with it. So that it becomes a distraction In itself or become all the film is truly about.

The film becomes questionable when at the end the villain all of a sudden becomes vulnerable. Though I believe that is to remind us that the is human. Which I don't believe we ever forget. It also allows the film not to become a total horror film. As it obviously has bigger or better aspirations for itself.

The direction by Jonas Cuaron Son of director Alphonso Cuaron (GRAVITY, Y TU MAMA TAMBIEN) while good also makes the film feel more anonymous than anything as you know nothing really about the characters other than some tidbits and circumstances that are presented. Given the situation the characters are in this is understandable. It's just the film never makes it's presence felt. So why should you choose this one from any other random thriller that is offered usually on VOD with a big star name attached?

With this film at least there feels like an effort to make something and not just try to make a film to make a profit only.


Grade: C+

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