June 13, 2014

directed by Amat Escalante, 2013


Opening with a bloodied and taped-up young man laying alongside a dead corpse in the back of a moving truck, Heli wastes little time thrusting the viewer into its vicious portrait of violence and vengeance. Functioning primarily as yet another unflinching look at the crookedness of modern-day Mexico and the escalating collateral damage left behind by the country’s hellish drug trade, Amat Escalante’s (Los bastardoslatest film is a brutal art-house provocation more interested in images of suffering than positing its transgressions as anything more than shock value. It was for this film that Escalante won the Best Director prize at last year’s Cannes Film Festival, his win coming only a year after fellow native Carlos Reygadas won the same award for Post Tenebras Lux, a similarly themed and much-better film about patriarchy and random acts of violence in Mexico.

Read full review at In Review Online


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