...engaging and discerning culture, as a way of life...

June 15, 2006

The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada - 7

My reason for watching this film is that it is written by Guillermo Arriaga, whose other work includes Amores Perros, 21 Grams, and Babel (to come out later this year). He usually works with director, Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, but this time Tommy Lee Jones stars and directs. The story is of a Mexican illegal who has befriended an American farmer (Pete) and works for him, the film then follows Pete as he tries to find the place where his friend wants to be buried. Without giving to much of the plot away, the film deals with vengeance, forgiveness, grace, regret, and the possibilities of redemption. The film shows how those furthest from who they know they ought to be often have the most hope for redemption, while those who cannot recognize their own brokenness, fall into despair and run from reconciliation. While Arriaga is often accused of didactic, maybe even moralistic, writing I find it perceptive of the human condition, while also telling a good story. It is less an argument, than a vision of real life that the audience can relate to, and maybe even learn and reflect (what's so bad about that?).

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