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Generally favorable reviews - based on 22 Critics What's this?

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  • Summary: Amigo, the 17th feature film from Academy Award-nominated writer-director John Sayles, stars legendary Filipino actor Joel Torre as Rafael, a village mayor caught in the murderous crossfire of the Philippine-American War. When U.S. troops occupy his village, Rafael comes under pressure from a tough-as-nails officer to help the Americans in their hunt for Filipino guerilla fighters. But Rafael’s brother is the head of the local guerillas, and considers anyone who cooperates with the Americans to be a traitor. Rafael quickly finds himself forced to make the impossible, potentially deadly decisions faced by ordinary civilians in an occupied country. A powerful drama of friendship, betrayal, romance and heartbreaking violence, AMIGO is a page torn from the untold history of the Philippines, and a mirror of today’s unresolvable conflicts. (Variance Films) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 22
  2. Negative: 1 out of 22
  1. Reviewed by: Bill Goodykoontz
    Oct 6, 2011
    80
    Fantastic acting by the likes of Garret Dillahunt, Chris Cooper and Joel Torre lift characters above the cliched, offering a one-sided history lesson that is still well worth learning.
  2. Reviewed by: A.O. Scott
    Aug 18, 2011
    80
    Amigo is a well-carpentered narrative, fast-moving and emphatic, stepping nimbly from gravity to good humor.
  3. Reviewed by: Roger Ebert
    Sep 14, 2011
    75
    Amigo is not as tightly crafted as "Lone Star." It's a messier work whose dialogue is at times a tad too purple, its political allusions a little too obvious, and it has a one-note character that is uncharacteristic of its creator.
  4. Reviewed by: David Fear
    Aug 16, 2011
    60
    Amigo's penchant for polemics keeps upsetting any semblance of balance; how can anyone hear the grace notes when the soapboxing is so deafening?
  5. Reviewed by: Michelle Orange
    Aug 18, 2011
    55
    The result is the double shrift of a thinly sketched background and a story that has trouble standing up on its own.
  6. Reviewed by: Marc Mohan
    Sep 1, 2011
    50
    The cinematography is crisp but sterile, and no one's clothes ever seem to get muddy or torn -- in short, there's no real sense of the atmosphere of a sticky, buggy, fetid jungle, and no intensity to a story that cries out for a sense of moral outrage.
  7. Reviewed by: Michael O'Sullivan
    Sep 1, 2011
    38
    The argument in Amigo is so heavy-handed - and its execution so crude - that by the time the movie winds its way to a predictable but uninvolving conclusion, nobody will be listening anymore.

See all 22 Critic Reviews

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