September is a big month for Mexico. The bicentennial falls on the 16th and El Infierno was released September 3rd. What is El Infierno? It seems to be the coolest movie to pop out this month. The plot of the film goes like this: an illegal immigrant is deported back to Mexico and sees just why he left in the first place. One thing leads to another and he gets neck-deep in the world of drug trafficking.
Plus, it’s played for laughs.
Yes, the third feature by acclaimed director Luis Estrada, El Infierno takes a satirical look at drug trafficking and corruption. The trailer is just celluloid perfection. The dregs and rural people are joined by desperation in their quest for riches, notoriety, and gaudy boots and clothes. Scenes of carnage are interspersed with scenes of fat henchmen grandly proclaiming their ridiculous nicknames, a nod to real cartel bosses such as “La Barbie,” “The Bitch,” and others.
As for us, this has been the answer to our prayers. A drug film that knows how stupid and ludicrous its subject matter can be. To put it in another way, this goes the route of Dr. Strangelove, if not in acclaim then at least in vision. This is the obverse of Machete, an equally out-of-this-world movie. An immigrant doesn’t go against corrupt Americans but against his own countrymen. After all, they lead him down this path in the first place.
Released almost two weeks before the bicentennial celebrations, the film makes pointed jabs at how far we still are to achieving the goals of the original revolution. You know, the one where we threw out the Spanish. And yes, the Mexican government took offense at posters with the tagline that said, “We have nothing to celebrate about.”
The best of the trailer is saved for last when a middle-aged man asks a teen, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” The kid replies, “What do you think? I want to be a badass like my dad!”
El Infierno has only been released in Mexico. For those in the country, please tell us how it is!