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Drama - Gangland

Get the Gringo (2012)

Duration1h 36m
RatingsUK: 15, USA: R, Spain: 18 
Source of storyAn original screenplay
DirectorAdrian Grunberg
Writers/ScriptMel Gibson, Stacy Perskie, Adrian Grunberg
StarringMel Gibson, Kevin Balmore, Dolores Heredia, Peter Gerety, Peter Stomare, Dean Norris, and a lot of Mexican actors
RatingsIMDb: 7.0 by 104,368 people.  Rotten Tomatoes: 82% by 52 reviewers.

Elevator Pitch: A couple of bank robbers escape from US justice by leaping a fence into Mexico. But one dies in the crash and the other is arrested by corrupt Mexican police who steal the proceeds of the robbery and get him jailed on trumped up charges. The jail is more like a small city with outer walls, where the guard patrol with M15s. Inside life goes on and the criminal forms a friendship with a boy who for some reason seems to be being protected by the criminals in charge of the prison. The reason turns out to be the kid’s liver since he is a viable transplant for Javi the criminal boss. Can the gringo tie up all the loose ends and save the boy from death, thereby earning the gratitude of the mother?

Content: No nudity and only a few implications of possible sex although at one point there is an attempted rape. A lot of beer drinking and continuous smoking, plus the sniffing of a few lines of coke. At the start there is an extended car chase in the desert before the border wall is jumped. Inside the prison day to day life takes place almost as if it was a small town. At one point a trio of assassins get in looking for the money and there is a shoot out with the local gunmen. The Gringo fights on the side of the locals, earning their gratitude. Quite a few people are executed, always a bit shocking. There is surgery.

A View: Despite being well liked this film had a limited release and seems not to have covered its quite moderate production cost. Mel Gibson plays his traditional role as the slightly down at the heel super hero. Give him a handgun and he kills people. But at well as that it was impressively atmospheric. I was reminded of a number of scenes in Breaking Bad. Despite the fact that I had to watch it in English and Spanish, because I am in Spain, I really enjoyed it and would recommend it to anyone who likes a bit of well plotted action.

Additional Info: Much of the film was made in Vera Cruz. I was there years ago, and found it to be a pretty exciting city in real life. 

About Victor R Gibson

Author of this site three technical books and two novels

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