Movie Review: El Chicano
This film is directed by Ben Bray and it stars Raul Castillo, David Castaneda, George Lopez, Aimee Garcia, Emilio Rivera, Jose Pablo Cantillo, and Marco Rodriguez.
This film follows police officer Diego (Raul Castillo) and his partner Detective Martinez (Jose Pablo Cantillo) investigating cartel related homicides. Diego soon realizes that his brothers death wasn’t a suicide and finds vital information about his brother all while investigating the murders.
As a fellow Chicana I felt the obligation to watch this film not only to support my community but as a future film critic and filmmaker. I’m giving my honest and sincere opinion and by no means don’t think I’m a hater of my own people. This film is bad, very bad. This movie desperately tries to give Latinos/Hispanics a hero but it fails to deliver. I admit it does a great job building the suspense and setting up for what’s supposed to be the climax but the climax falls completely flat and the ending is too ridiculous. There are some incredibly talented names in this cast and it surprises me that this is what they deliver. The script isn’t good and the editing is awkward. Many scenes take place in the dark, rain and it makes it a bit difficult to follow whats occuring. Although, there is one fight scene that takes place in a club and that looked quite impressive. This film also has some shocking gruesome scenes that come out of nowhere. Personally the best acting comes from the wife (Aimee Garcia) and mother of Diego. It has many (too many) eye rolling moments for instance the cheesy dialogue and “heroic” scenes that don’t have the crow pleasing feeling because it’s too formulaic and poorly written. I wanted to like this film, not only because I’m a Chicana but because it takes place in my hometown; East LA. I have to say that as someone who was born and raised in East LA I don’t recall encountering these type of “Chicanos” in my area. Sadly this film portrays Chicanos as the stereotypical cholos who do nothing but crimes. The movie adds to the negative connotation of the word “Chicano” and it saddens me. Sadly it pains me to say that I can’t recommend to see this film.