El Lute (1987)




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Policemen everywhere are sometimes lampooned for their self-importance and pomposity, and it is not unusual for a particularly impudent thief to become a national hero. However, Spain's Guardia Civil in the 1960s were an unusually self-righteous lot, and the otherwise not particularly edifying real-life exploits of the young thief Eleuterio Sanchez, nicknamed "El Lute," thrilled the nation. This crime adventure drama retells his story. After being arrested for a robbery gone bad, the young thief refuses to finger his partners in crime even under torture. Despite this, they are rounded up and executed for the murder they committed while robbing a jewelry store. El Lute received a commutation from General Franco, and was on his way to prison when he escaped, eluding a nationwide manhunt for several weeks despite having a broken arm. ~ Clarke Fountain, Rovi


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