DMovies - Your platform for thought-provoking cinema

I Promise You Anarchy (Te Prometo Anarquía)

A fiery mixture of skateboarders, homosexuality and illegal blood trade is the promising feat of this Mexican film; sadly it fails to gel together

I Promise You Anarchy sounds like a very promising movie, mixing a number of heady and controversial topics. Gay skaters, the chaotic urban buzz and background of Mexico City, immigration to the United States, illegal blood trade and even human trafficking: it’s all in there. Mexican director Hernández Cordón sets out to comment on the apparently anarchic forces driving his country, but ultimately it is his very own film that feels indeed anarchic and disjointed.

Miguel (Diego Calva), from a middle-class family, and Johnny (Eduardo Martinez Pena), from a poorer background, are skateboarders in Mexico City’s largest square. They also share a profound friendship and sexual attraction for each other. They sell their own blood, until they find out that Johnny has hepatitis and therefore he can no longer do it. They then become brokers for the blood of their fellow skateboarders and friends. Until one day a big delivery job goes wrong: a large group of prospective blood sellers are kidnapped while Miguel and Johnny pop to the shop to buy water for them.

The urban images of Mexico City are a bleak backdrop to this sad predicament, and the performances in the film are strong and consistent. There are particularly beautiful shots in bed (see trailer below), on the motorway and of a nude Johnny on a skate rink. The film never feels exploitative or vulgar, and the topics are very pertinent in modern-day Mexico and the world.

The problem is that film script – which apparently combines elements of fiction and documentary – is too jumbled and incoherent. It is borderline impossible to follow the intertwining plots and the numerous characters being progressively introduced. For example, the abduction of the blood-donors takes place offscreen, and it is unclear what happened to them and even the consequences of the stealthy event for the lives of the two lead characters. Their relationship breaks down, but no one ever understands why, and the outcome in the end of the movie is even less tangible.

Hernández Cordón threw dirty photography, subversive themes and social woes all in the big gumbo of the film, but sadly he overcooked it, and the result is hardly palatable. This is a pity, a great opportunity missed. The film is still worth watching for some poignant moments.

I Promise You Anarchy shoed as part of the 30th BFI Flare London LGBT Film Festival, which DMovies followed live. You can now view it on BFI player – just click here.

Don’t forget to watch the film trailer right here:


By Petra von Kant - 21-03-2016

Petra von Kant is a filmmaker, critic and performance artist. She was born Manoel Almeida to Brazilian parents in 1971 in Bremen, Germany. Her parents were political refugees fleeing the military dict...

DMovies Poll

Are the Oscars dirty enough for DMovies?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

Most Read

Forget Friday the 13th, Paranormal Activity and the [Read More...]
Just a few years back, finding a film [Read More...]
A lot of British people would rather forget [Read More...]
Sexual diversity is at the very heart of [Read More...]
Pigs might fly. And so Brexit might happen. [Read More...]
Films quotes are very powerful not just because [Read More...]

Read More

Where Elephants Go

Catalin Rotaru
Gabi Virginia Sarga
2024

Victor Fraga - 21-06-2024

Highly experimental, bonkers Romanian film follows three lonely citizens of Bucharest as desperately seek to inject meaning into their lives - in the Official Competition of the 23 Tiff Romania [Read More...]

The Old Bachelor

Oktay Baraheni
2024

Victor Fraga - 21-06-2024

Father and son battle for the love of a seductive young woman, in this elegant however prosaic Iranian drama-turned-crime-thriller from Iran - in the Official Competition of the 23rd Tiff Romania [Read More...]

Our dirty questions to Jay Liu

 

Eoghan Lyng - 21-06-2024

Eoghan Lyng interviews the director of Anywhere the Wind Blows, a ":punchy" and queer love story from Hong Kong; they talk about LGBTQ+ ideologies in the Chinese region, the "guilt of comfort experienced by refugees, Joachim Trier, Robin Campillo, and more! [Read More...]

Facebook Comment

Website Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *