Secuestro Express Reviews
better watch some tarantino movie. more original
I normally do not find horror films frightening. What does frighten me is the very thought of living in an environment that I have no control over and where peace does not have a chance.
Director Jonathan Jakuowicz attempts to create this world and successfully scared the living crap out of me. But I am not completely convinced either.
The movie begins with a stunning panoramic potrait of Caracas, Venezuela beginning with a chaotic looking slum region with homes precariously piled on top of one another like dung on fault like hills and mountains and then it takes you to the skyscrapers of the city center.
Then the movie goes right into a chilling scene where a kidnapper look directly at you, the viewer, into the camera, and says, "you're going to play Russian Roulette Venezuelan style. You're the only one playing, and you're gonna keep playing until you are the winner."
The movie makes you feel as if you've been kidnapped by thugs from slums but it also makes you feel the grotesque conditions of these poor areas.
All in all, I found the movie to be painful, depressing, and disturbing. It's definitely a movie I wouldn't care to want to see again.
I have problems with this movie "being an attempt to begin a dialogue between the poor and rich to address the manic socio-economic condition n this city" which, according to the director in his commentary amounted to 14,000 murders/year.
The style of this movie was very reminiscent of Greengrass'es "United 92" movie. Lots of hand held close up footage violently unstable and blurred by the fast flow of filming. In a sense, there's also a sort of cliche about this movie of trying to show the "meanest district" in the world. We saw that Boys in the Hood, etc. etc. That made the film less horrific and reminded me of a discussion I once had with a man from Manchester. I was telling him of how dangerous certain areas of Los Angeles were, and he sarcastically retorted, "what? you mean they carry guns and car jack people? well, we all carry two guns and pocket knife in Manchester, even the nurses..." His point being, "So what? If you're already scared, you won't even have a chance of survival in a church."
They can be sad and frightening, but they also tend to over accentuate violence.
I had issues with one aspect in the movie, the most violent character who practically rapes Elba Escobar's character comes off in the beginning as if he is some family man as plays with his baby before committing this horrific kidnap. It wasn't believeable to me because the character is clearly a crack addict and crack addicts do not have a soul or conscious and had a child been in his arms, that child would have been dead a long time ago.
The movie tries to hard to combine all of the ugliness of Caracas and imply that the city is that horrible. This same story could be told in Los Angeles or Mexico City, and even East Oakland. The poor are always going to rebel with crime in the face of a government that does little to remedy the condition.
I guess I'll keep this movie at 4 stars because it effectively creates a strong reaction.