26 August 2002 | Infofreak
A strange sci fi spaghetti western black comedy. Highly recommended!
'Atolladero' is a very impressive debut from writer/director Oscar Aibar that will appeal to fans of Alex de la Iglesia's 'Accion Mutante' and 'El Dia de la bestia'. All three films share a similar bizarre sense of humour and a willingness to ignore genre restrictions. I don't know what was going on in Spain in the mid 90s but I wish some of the originality and vitality of these movies could be imported right now to Hollywood, U.S.A.
The movie is set towards the end of this century where we are told the towns between the major cities have become lawless wastelands. Atolladero is one such hell hole, and is run with ruthless efficiency by the 150 year old "Judge" and his evil henchmen. The Judge's right hand man is Madden, a half Indian psychopath played by punk legend Iggy Pop. Local cop Lenny (Pere Ponce) is one of the few decent men in town. Tired of the corruption and perversion endemic to the area he decides to quit his job, and start a new life in L.A. To do so he must go against the Judge and his nasty cronies as no-one leaves Atolladero alive.
This movie is really fresh and interesting. It combines elements of the post-apocalyptic SF genre ('Mad Max', 'A Boy And His Dog', 'The Ultimate Warrior,etc.) with classic Sergio Leone nihilism, and large lashings of Alex Cox subversion, and Garth Ennis' sick humour. Highly recommended.