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Thursday, 27 August 2009

Film: ‘Sin Nombre’ – directed by Cary Fukunaga
Star rating 8/10

This is a brilliant, although very brutal film, about illegal immigrants trying to escape Honduran poverty via Mexico into the good old USA. In this directorial debut, which is executively produced by Gael Garcia Bernal, a young teenage girl Sayra (impressively played here by Paulina Gaitan) is looking for a better life along with her estranged father and her uncle.

It features some extremely brutal gang violence, with gang member Willy breaking their code by carrying on an illicit romance behind the gang leader’s back. After the tragic aftermath of his actions, he finds himself on the same freight train as Sayra and her group of escapees.

The unlikely relationship that ensues between the trusting Sayra and the desperate and broken Willy is moving. The cinematography is also impressive, with the morning sunrises across the desperately poor land showing how cruel and hard life must for some Central American people.

It was hard to watch the sheer brutality that this film was so honestly attempting to portray, but nevertheless I could quite see why is was awarded the 2009 Sundance Festival Directors prize. Bleak but nonetheless beautiful.

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