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MSPIFF: Rudo y Cursi

Posted at 3:41 PM on April 23, 2009 by Euan Kerr

"Rudo y Cursi" could be translated a bunch of different ways, I like "Thug and Corny" myself. They are the nicknames of Beto and Tato, brothers played by Diego Luna and Gael Garcia Bernal in Mexican director Carlos Cuaron's new film.

It's a story we have heard before: brothers who rise meteorically from poverty to fame and fortune through sport, in this case soccer. Beto is a great goalie, but he has a bad gambling habit and an unfortunate temper, hence his nickname, Rudo. Tato is a great goalscorer, but is convinced that he is really destined be a great singer. His version of Cheap Trick's "I want you to want Me" has to be heard to be believed.

The brothers who are gifted but naive, fall in with a talent scout who offers them riches, minus his cut of course. All they have to do is take his advice. It doesn't end well.

What makes this movie fun is the way Luna and Bernal put body and soul into their characters. Rudo and Cursi fight tooth and nail in the way that only brothers who deeply love each other can. Together they light up the screen, just as they did in "Y Tu Mama Tambien."

Carlos Cuaron, who wrote the script for "Y to Mama" which was directed by his brother Alphonso will introduce tonight's screening, and we'll talk to him tomorrow for Movie Natters.

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