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Rudo y Cursi
IMDB Rating: 6.7/10 from 12 votes
Release: 16 July 2009 (Netherlands) /

Rudo y Cursi

Genre: Comedy, Drama, Sport
Director: Carlos Cuarón,
Stars: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Synopsis: Mexican half brothers Beto and Tato - who will eventually be appropriately nicknamed Rudo (rough) and Cursi (corny), respectively - have a typical love/hate relationship with each other. They both work on a banana plantation and live with their extended family consisting of their mother, abusive stepfather, sister Nadia, and Beto's wife Toña and their children. The family are rural peasant class and are barely making ends meet. The brother's fortunes change when into their lives comes Batuta, a soccer scout. Despite their advancing ages, both Beto and Tato are naturally gifted at soccer, Beto as a goaltender and Tato as a striker. Playing professionally has always been Beto's dream, although Tato has other professional thoughts on his mind. Batuta eventually recruits both for different teams in Mexico City. Beto and Tato's fortunes rise and fall, the falls based on those things which hold more passion for the brothers. For Tato, he loves fast women, specifically television ... Written by Huggo

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Critic Reviews


In 2001, Gael Garcia Bernal and Diego Luna starred in Y tu mama tambien, a film I would place in the top ten for this decade. Their dynamic on screen was palpable. The combination of a their performances as well as a gripping story from the Cuaron brothers, Carlos and Alfonso. Alfonso directed the film and went on to direct Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban and Children of Men, the latter being a gem. Now, Carlos has taken the reigns as director for his first feature with Rudo y Cursi.

He reuintes with his Y tu mama stars Bernal and Luna, who have had stellar careers since 2001. Here they play brothers in a small Mexican town who dream of one day leaving and making it big. Beto (Luna) wants to become the greatest goalie in the country while Tato (Bernal) wants to be a singer, but can play soccer better than he can sing. They are discovered by Batuta (Guillermo Francella) during one of their games and offers one of them the chance of a life time: to become a professional football player. The scene to decide who gets to go is one of the best in the film, so I won't ruin it.

The majority of the film centers on the two brothers trying to fulfill their dreams but struggling along the way with gambling, women, and the sport they love. What I love so much about this film are the characters of Beto and Tato. They are so developed. You can tell exactly what their life has been life without knowing too much about them. They are simple folk and talk as such, regardless of how rich or destitute they become. Cuaron makes this unbelievable story as believable as possible, throwing the characters curveballs, much as life does.

Luna and Bernal work so well together. They look nothing alike yet I believe that they are brothers here. There is a scene where Luna is very upset with his brother and venting about it to his wife, but when she chimes in and talks down about Bernal, Luna tells her not to speak about his brother like that. It's the little things that they do that give their characters depth and feeling.

Cuaron uses narration throughout the course of the film, much like he did with Alfonso in Y tu mama tambien. This narrator however has an identity (Batuta) while in the other film it is anonymous. I think I would have liked it better that way or simply done without. The anonymous narrator can bring some interesting details and histories to the story, almost like watching a documentary. This narrating is bias and doesn't get quite as personal. It could have been dealt with in a better manner.

Although Carlos has been involved with several movies, I was very impressed with his directorial debut. Some people are born screenwriters, but step behind the camera and things fall apart. Luckily for us Carlos is multi talented like his brother. There are some very nice scenes here with solid camera work. One particular shot of the two brothers sitting across from each other at a table was beautiful in my opinion.

After the film was over and the credits began to roll, I happened to notice the names under the "Produced by" title. They were Alfonso Cuaron, Alejandoro Gonzalez Inarritu, and Guillermo Del Toro. They recently made a production company called Cha Cha Cha films. These three filmmakers won world wide acclaim in 2006 when they each released brilliant pieces of cinema. Cuaron with Children of Men, Inarritu with Babel, and Del Toro with Pan's Labyrinth. A pretty impressive threesome to have on your film's credits. I was impressed.

Rudo y Cursi is a very satisfying film for those who aren't looking for a typical story. Some might get mad at the ending but that's understandable. Such is life. Not everybody can be happy. I guess that's the film's underlying message that if you accept what life has dealt you, happiness will come to you.

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