There are elements in The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada that I tend to distrust when they crop up in other movies. There’s the theme of redemption, which can all too easily lead to a Hollywood cop-out, even (or maybe especially) when it’s tied to some notion of religious transcendence. There’s the taken-for-granted dysfunctional social context, and there’s the visceral macho unpleasantness, which feels dishonest in movies such as Henri-Georges Clouzot’s The Wages of Fear (1953) and Peckinpah’s The Wild Bunch (1969) and Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia (1974). I have to admit I still like those three films a lot, and I suspect that what I appreciate most in this movie is the nuance Jones gives these and other shopworn notions.
Adam Walter finally caught Crash. He was not impressed.
FORGET THIS YEAR’S OSCARS. NEXT YEAR’S CHAMPION IS ON THE WAY…
Contrived, self-conscious, obvious, repetitive, manipulative, heavy-handed, pretentious–apparently these are not qualities the major film awards organizations overlook today.
The story is shockingly manipulative and treats delicate social issues with all the subtlety of sledgehammer blows.
My 2 cents: this is a bad knock off of John Sayles. You’ll do much better treating yourself to a very fine film like the criminally-neglected City of Hope (1991) or, more recent, Sunshine State (2002).
Dr. Dolittle 3, the Eddie Murphy-free, ripoff sequel that was once destined for a straight-to-DVD release, is apparently just so mind-blowingly awesome that the people at 20th Century Fox have decided to give it a theatrical release after all.