Monday, June 25, 2012

Film Recommendation of the Week...

Paraiso Travel
Release Date January 18, 2008 (Colombia). 
Running Time-1 hour 57 minutes.
Spanish w/English subtitles.

Two young lovers from Medellín. Colombia plot to chase the American Dream with an illegal trip to the United States. The storyline includes flashbacks of their journey juxtaposed with their current predicament in New York City. Through an unfortunate turn of events, Marlon become separated from his girlfriend, the lovely and beguiling Reina (played by our current "Babe of the Week" Angélica Blandón) and he is left to fend for himself, meeting every possible type of shysty-ass huckster the city has to offer, but also running into people who are willing to help.

But nothing compares to the bullshit they were sold at the travel agency back in Medellín, where a passport and an airline ticket to Panama turns into a nightmare the second they step off the plane all the way to the "frontera" of Texas. This film offers the brutal and harrowing details of such a perilous journey for people who only want to escape their countries for a brighter future. It is pathetic and sad, but all too realistic.

Even sadder is the crap Marlon (played with authenticity and conviction by Colombian actor Aldemar Correa) goes through to put together some semblance of a life while never ever forgetting his sweetheart Reina. I wouldn't forget her, either. She is sassy, smart and way too beautiful to have left for lost. But when circumstances are in place for them to reunite, Marlon finds out in heartbreaking fashion that the other side of this "Sueño Americano" becomes nothing but a tragic nightmare for both he and Reina.

The only bad thing about the movie is the character played by John Leguizamo. He was way too over-the-top and the role was acted very poorly. Leguizamo is a terrible actor and he almost ruined the whole film, but there is a redeeming story despite his all-out effort to fuck things up with this stupid and unnecessary role. I must admit I sought the movie out because of Angélica Blandón, but after watching it I can safely say that it is a film any lover of cinema would enjoy immensely.

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