| Original Score: 3/5
He's helped by charismatic, pleasingly ambivalent performances by all involved, and while a later penalty sequence is needlessly prolonged, it doesn't diminish the film's cumulative effect. Serious fun.
Rudo y Cursi never quite figures out what it wants to be. Is it a sports comedy? A tale of sibling rivalry? A look at Mexico's gritty underbelly, set against a soccer backdrop?
| Original Score: 2/4
Carlos Cuaron, Oscar-nominated screenwriter of Y Tu Mama También, makes his directorial debut with this easygoing sports movie/family drama/musical comedy/crime story.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
[Has] a mess of cultural issues to reckon with, and Rudo y Cursi deals with them while offering an engaging rags-to-riches sports fantasy.
| Original Score: 3/4
Bernal and Luna have great sibling comic chemistry.
As we follow their adventures, it's impossible to ignore how poorly women come off in this story, alternatively as nags, cheats, liars and cloying opportunists.
Some of this is funny, thanks to the playful performances, but much of it just seems familiar and juvenile.
Ay carumba-blimey, what a mess.
Carlos Cuarón's fierce, profane and hilarious comedy about two brothers is not so much about sports as about how we play the game of life.
It's a great little sports movie.
It was funny, it was sweet, it was warm but it never felt hacky or maudlin.
This is not a sports movie. But for lovers of Luna and Bernal, especially Luna and Bernal together, Rudo y Cursi will be a quick, harmless, caffeinated booster shot until their next collaboration.
While it may seem obvious which brother is responsible and which is the flake, both Rudo and Cursi are equally flawed, one of the film's realistic charms.
There is plenty of coarse, macho humor. There are nearly as many moments that are goofy and sentimental.
There are plenty of kicks: class struggle, wild crackups, Cheap Trick, occasional melodrama and lots of blackly comic moralizing on the lure and letdowns of modern Mexican celebrity.
Rudo y Cursi is a grave and calculated affront to the men of Mexico, and that's the source of its roistering charm.
This bitter pill might easily have driven the rest of the film, but instead Cuaron contrives for both brothers to become stars, and the story devolves into a familiar tale about the price of success.
Rudo y Cursi is the sort of high-level buddy movie every national cinema needs for export -- along with its masterpieces, to be sure.
The results are not nearly as auspicious as that other film, but Bernal and Luna are so good together that they carry the day anyway.
| Original Score: B
As Cuarón's enjoyable film about brotherhood and the beautiful game zestfully points out, a block and a save are two sides of the same play.
| Original Score: 4/5
It gives a far deeper and more engaging portrait of Mexico -- rich and poor, rural and urban, old and new -- than you're likely to find anywhere else this week.
I won't tell you who wins the Rudo/Cursi showdown, but when it comes to the Cuarón brothers, my money's on Alfonso.
You'd never know this was a debut film. Unlike Rudo and Cursi, who don't know their left from their right, Mr. Cuarón directs with a hand that's as sure as it is deft.
It mixes soap-opera sentimentality with playful, jumpy aggression and dresses a bittersweet, rags-to-riches fable in the bright clothes of pop satire.
| Original Score: 3.5/5
Luna and García Bernal display the kind of chemistry that makes you overlook the clichés in the script by first-time director Carlos Cuarón. Sometimes good-natured fun is enough.
Rudo y Cursi is enjoyable, with an engaging ensemble cast anchored by the charismatic performances of Luna and Bernal.
Rudo y Cursi is a sly miniaturist pleasure on its own terms, a piquant fable about the bouncing ups and downs of success, failure, competition, and comradeship.
| Original Score: B+
Luna and García Bernal gamely reunite for this occasionally entertaining film about two rival soccer-playing brothers, but the paint-by-numbers story line and overzealous direction do them few favors.