Circo (2011)

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Aaron Schock's acclaimed film, which has appeared at many world festivals and is the most recent winner of the Jury Award at the Hampton's International Film Festival, is one of the most compelling documentaries seen in years. Set in the cinematically rich milieu of a century-old traveling circus in rural Mexico, CIRCO follows the family-run "Circo Mexico" as they struggle to stay together despite mounting debt, dwindling audiences, and a simmering family conflict. The hardscrabble founders, the Ponce family, have lived and performed on the back roads of Mexico since the 19th century. Tino, the ringmaster, is driven by his dream to lead his parents' circus to greater success. He corrals the energy of his whole family, including his parents, his brother and his four young children, towards this singular goal. But his wife Ivonne is determined to make a change. Feeling exploited by her in-laws, she longs to return her kids to a childhood lost to laboring in the circus. Through an intricately woven story of a marriage in trouble and of a century-old family tradition that hangs in the balance, CIRCO asks: To whom and to what should we ultimately owe our allegiances? Gorgeously filmed along the back roads of rural Mexico, CIRCO is a road movie that opens the viewer to the luminous world of a traveling circus while examining the universal themes of family bonds, filial responsibility, and the weight of cultural inheritance. --(c)First Run Features
Rating:
NR
Genre:
Art House & International , Documentary , Drama , Special Interest
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In Theaters:
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Critic Reviews for Circo

All Critics (26) | Top Critics (12)

Circo takes you to the edge of human experience on a path none of this summer's superhero daredevils would ever consider taking.

Full Review… | July 21, 2011
Globe and Mail
Top Critic

"Circo" is an amazing feat.

Full Review… | June 2, 2011
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Top Critic

It says as much about human nature as it shows about struggling entertainers.

Full Review… | May 19, 2011
Minneapolis Star Tribune
Top Critic

Sort of a modern-day version of "Toby Tyler," only without a frisky, mischievous Mr. Stubbs as comic relief.

Full Review… | April 21, 2011
Seattle Times
Top Critic

"Circo'' offers a fascinating mix of backstage drama and family dynamics.

Full Review… | April 21, 2011
Boston Globe
Top Critic

In "Circo," Aaron Schock documents the fearsome labor and intense willpower it takes to keep this shoestring show on the road, and the price paid by the family that runs it.

Full Review… | April 14, 2011
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Circo

Great Documentary about a circus family trying to hold it all together, in rural Mexico. Exciting and heartbreaking all at once.

Frank Gannon
Frank Gannon

A remarkable and heartfelt documentary about the "life" of a Mexican touring circus family -- rife with challenges mixed with dedication to family and the lure of the "show." Marvelously assembled without being intrusive, this is a memorable film, worthy of your attention.

Jerry Kane
Jerry Kane

Really, really great filmmaking. A careful documentary about the grit of 3rd world countries, the idea of family, the potential for fame. I'm really glad to have caught this one, that otherwise didn't jump out at me having seen the trailer.

Gordon Clark
Gordon Clark

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