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56

Mixed or average reviews - based on 12 Critics What's this?

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7.5

Generally favorable reviews- based on 4 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: A young Mexican immigrant, Pedro, journeys to New York City in search of the successful father he's never met, only to have his belongings and identity stolen by a conniving thief, Juan. As Pedro is left alone and unable to communicate in a country foreign to him, Juan cons his way into the home of Pedro's father, Diego, finding a man just as flawed as he is. While Juan attempts to reinvent himself, Pedro's only hope lies with a mysteriously complex prostitute, Magda, as he frantically searches for his identity. (IFC First Take) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 12
  2. Negative: 0 out of 12
  1. 75
    Zalla constructs a suspenseful movie with no intention of sugarcoating the daily hardships of New York's underclass.
  2. Reviewed by: Tasha Robinson
    75
    The acting is impeccable, with Hernandez radiating an air of sleazy charm and Ochoa doing terrific work as a bitter man who's just lonely enough to have chinks in his well-developed armor.
  3. 75
    The film is built around two relationships, both touching, both emotionally true.
  4. 60
    The result is contrived, but compelling--as is the movie's high-powered humanism.
  5. 58
    The film seems even more one-note when compared to the recent indie feature "Chop Shop," which also follows young immigrant hustlers in NYC, yet takes the time to provide a fuller picture of the city and its opportunities. Zalla prefers to wallow in the dead-end, an approach that's initially powerful, then numbing.
  6. Zalla, a graduate of Columbia's film school, is talented and single-minded. He needs to lighten up, literally. He frames his characters to bring out all their sweaty desperation, and his palette is dark with splashes of muddy brown; even the street scenes look as if they were shot in a dungeon.
  7. Reviewed by: Robert Koehler
    40
    Ochoa is such a masterful actor that he makes things fairly interesting despite the script, with Hernandez and Espindola well-cast as two young men operating by different moral compasses.

See all 12 Critic Reviews

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  2. Mixed: 0 out of
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