Dir. Carlos Sama. Mexico, 2003. 112 min.
A real script and a tough editor would have done a world of good for this messy little comedy rushing all over Mexico City in its despondent attempts to cover three plots, a host of characters and several film genres at the same time. The general idea being that if none of the separate ingredients can stand up on its own, the best is to throw in some more, hoping that driven fast enough and then tied up together any old way for the final act, it would put the frenetic race into some kind of shape. It doesn't and the best bet for this Columbia-Tristar release, which went in and out of the Mexican cinemas in a jiffy, is a quick transfer to the Hispanic video markets. Incidentally, no one has dreamed up an English title for it yet (the original is a nonsensical word play) and possibly no one will need to.
Two separate love stories and one police investigation of a serial killer are feverishly climbing over each other for almost two hours, reaching the point where everyone, certainly the audience, is getting out of breath and patience. The first one concerns Orlando (Juan Manuel Bernal) a high-strung dubbing producer specialising in reality shows and Sonia (Mariana Gaja), his health-freak, telepathy-obsessed girl friend. The second is about Renee (Cecilia Suarez), another dubbing actress, and her partner, Mauricio (Jose Maria Yazpik), who designs web sites, is an occasional hacker and a sexual under-performer.
And then there are two American police experts (Byron Thames and Blake Gibbons), flown in to Mexico to assist the local law, in their ineffectual efforts to capture Mama Rosa (Tara Parra), a former nurse who has been killing loving males and selling their organs to the Chinese mafia. All sorts of lightly cooked ideas such as religious fanaticism, ESP communication, identity crisis of dubbing actors who lose contact with reality and can't make up their mind about who they are and what they want or holistic medicine, are sent up during the proceedings, but nothing stays long enough on screen to leave a lasting impression.
Cama's record as a successful director of commercials is very much in evidence, whether it is in the pace he adopts for his picture, his utilisation of hit songs to pump up the action, his schematic characters or his reluctance to delve on anything longer than a few seconds. The absence of a credit for the script may indicate there have been some problems in that department in the course of the production. Quite understandably so.
Prod cos: United Pictures, Columbia Pictures, Reider Films, Fidecine
Prods: Salvador de la Fuente, Erwin Neumaier
Int'l Sales: Columbia Tristar
DoP: Federico Barbarosa
Ed: Alejandro Rodriguez
Prod Des: Miguel Angel Alvarez
Costumes: Barbara Gonzalez
Sound: Antonio Diego
Main cast: Juan Manuel Bernal, Cecilia Suarez, Mariana Gaja, Jose Mria Yazpik, Tara Parra, Donald Cortes, Blake Gibbons, Byron Thames, Eugenio Partilotti, Monica Huarte.