30 December 2018 | Bezenby
Not endorsed by the NYC tourist board
Dark, grim film that includes Italian/Spanish actors portraying Mexicans, and the whole bleak reality of the illegal immigrant culture.
Sergio is one such guy. Having been talked into crossing into America, he finds that life as a 'wetback' in New York is nothing short of awful. He needs papers to avoid deportation and a friend (Luigi Pistilli) takes him to Davis (Fernando Rey), a sinister fellow who not only gets him a demeaning job, also promises to sort his paperwork out...for a fee.
The only saving grace of meeting Davis is that Davis' girlfriend is Mimsy Farmer, and almost right away the two hit it off. The things, Fernando is a very possessive individual and may be even more powerful and dangerous than meets the eye, so Mimsy and Sergio try to be discreet. In a community that Davis possibly controls, how is that going to work out?
Man, does New York look rough in this film! Sergio wanders the streets either alone or with Mimsy Farmer, as they two of them mutter about their bleak existence and try to figure a way to escape. I didn't think Mimsy Farmer was that great an actress, but she proved me wrong with this film. She plays a character almost completely burnt out on hopelessness in a land that never cared about her, with whoever played Sergio equally impressive as a man who's hopes are almost immediately destroyed.
Whereas Luigi Pistilli puts in a good turn as the sleazy friend struggling the retain his humanity, Fernando Rey simply blows them all away as the sinister Davis. He barely raises his voice or even leaves his office, but he controls almost everything, conveying power and confidence with little effort at all. A true great.
The film looks amazing too, and its yet another Mimsy Farmer film that involves the use of mirrors (like The Perfume of the Lady in Black). Don't expect much action in this one, but when violence does erupt it is brutal and realistic, most of all the bit when a protesting immigrant worker is killed in a warehouse with a shovel. It just conveys how little human lives matter to some people.