Such a frustrating disappointment
a film so unique, intoxicating and bizarre that it not only demands another viewing, but is also forgivable as a satirical comedy where the jokes eventually take the back seat.
Like the great film, it's made with a great deal of visible affection both in front of and behind the camera.
Great story, amazing characters, superb action, enthralling cinematography. Yes, this is something I am glad I spent money on.
Andrew is a college student in California (though he looks a little old to be a traditional student) who works in a hotel and is apparently some distance away from his parents, who have financial problems. His options for continuing his education are limited. He lives with Melissa, who seems to have a job, but whatever they make, it is not enough. With their friend Jonny, they decide to take a trip in a blue Corvair to Mexico, with the apparent intent of partying, but there is one additional stop to make.Pepe is a drug dealer who is quite a character. He also has parties, but that's not why they are visiting. Pepe can sell them $2000 worth of a certain drug which they can take back to the States and sell for a profit, solving Andrew's problems. But to get the drugs past the border guards, Andrew and Jonny have to do something very unpleasant. Actually, Jonny didn't have to do anything but he felt bad for his friend.So the road trip resumes, and the friends get to party, but there are problems, and a return to Pepe's place is required. Pepe is having his own party--a costume party--so the friends have to put on costumes. It's not as funny as it sounds, but anyway ...Carlos is a mechanic the friends meet on one of their first stops, and they encounter him later. The Corvair has some minor damage the first time, and Carlos would be happy to fix it, but Andrew says no. The friends really need Carlos on their second trip through his town, which has turned into quite an adventure.So will the group succeed in their mission? Or will they at least get out of Mexico alive? This movie is an adventure, but not really a fun one. Most of the time it can be quite depressing, at least when the friends aren't on the run toward or away from something. There is humor, most of it provided by Pepe and his obviously gay friend (Pepe also seems gay but it's not as obvious). The friend seems German but the only name in the cast list that would seem to fit is Raul. Anyway, he's tough and strong despite his feminine behavior. These two would seem to be the most obvious reason to watch.I know Colin Hanks from two TV roles: an uptight cop with a rebellious partner, and a fairly normal husband and father with a quirky wife, parents and siblings. Here, he has long hair and is somewhat reckless, but he is slightly more logical than his friend. It took me a while to recognize him (in his other roles he looks and talks just like his father), but he definitely shows signs of his father's talent here.Lauren German also shows talent. Her character is the voice of reason but can't seem to get through to the others. She cares about them but the terrible situations they get themselves into upset her a lot. Still, she does her best to remain strong.I'm not familiar with Eric Balfour but he does a good job as well. Andrew is one dangerous character and he's lucky to have Melissa.I want to single out a cute little girl trying to raise money at the U.S.-Mexico border as well.There was so much cursing sometimes I couldn't tell what was going on for all the interruptions in the sound, which of course were accompanied by obscured faces when it happened. But with the drug references we already knew this was not fit for family viewing. There is occasional violence as well.There was music for just about every taste. I liked a lot of the Spanish language music and judging from the number of times I saw the word Mariachi in the credits, that must have been the style. Some of the other music I didn't care for.If you like desert scenery with some green, there's plenty of that. I prefer lots more trees myself.If you like adventure and can stand not to laugh too much, this might be for you.
This is a very nice looking film where a couple of supporting characters are far more interesting than the stars of the show and the filmmakers apparently didn't realize who was the real villain of their story. It's got a quintet of winning performances, a worthwhile moral and creates engaging relationships that draw you into the movie. A little too sparse on details, too dependent on mood and with an ending that falls fairly flat, Rx is nonetheless swift and direct enough to grab your interest and hold onto it.Andrew (Eric Balfour) is a poor college student in Southern California with a hipster chin beard and a job as a valet. With Melissa (Lauren German), his high school girlfriend from an upper middle class family, and their drug dealing, third wheel buddy Johnny (Colin Hanks), Eric sets out for Mexico. They tell Melissa it's for a party but Andrew and Johnny are also going to do a drug deal. It's a run-of-the-mill trip for Johnny until Andrew pulls out a wad of bills and asks for a lot more pills than Johnny expected. Andrew needs the drugs to sell in order to save his mom and dad from financial ruin. But things go wrong as they try and smuggle the pills back across the boarder and Andrew makes one horribly bad decision after another until there's no way all three friends are getting out of Mexico alive.It's usually not a good sign when the best things about a film are a couple of supporting characters and that's somewhat true of Rx. Alan Tudyk and Ori Pfeffer play Pepe and Raul, a couple of gay, expatriate, Eurotrash drug dealers pushing prescription pills and holding costume parties in a Mexican village so small it's not even listed on the maps. I don't know if it's the script or the performers, but there's so much more energy and depth and nuance to Pepe and Raul than there is to Andrew, Melissa and Johnny. This drug dealing duo feel like real people unique to this story, while the main characters feel like they could have been cut and pasted out of a dozen other films. Eric Balfour, Lauren German and Colin Hanks do an admirable job and building up the friendship and love between their characters, but this film tells you next to nothing about them characters nor gives you a reason to want to know more. On the other hand, I bet anyone who watches this comes away wishing they could have seen more of Pepe and Raul.I also don't think that co-writer/director Ariel Vromen appreciated that Andrew eventually reveals himself as the movie's true villain. Not only are almost all of the terrible things that happen Rx the fault of Andrew, but there's a moment when he engages in deliberate betrayal for his own ends. At that point, I realized that Andrew was a bad guy who deserved to have bad things happen to him. This film never quite figured that out, which results in an ending where Andrew is supposed to play the hero not making any moral, ethical or dramatic sense. When the audience doesn't care if the character under threat lives or dies, it's impossible to generate any tension or suspense.But while the ending of Rx doesn't work out, the beginning is a minor joy to behold. This isn't a horror movie but anyone looking to make one would do well to study the first half of this film. It does an excellent job of establishing a bright surface with a just barely perceptible tone of impending doom underneath. You get the sense something bad is going to happen, yet you're not sure and that lends an edge of excitement to everything on screen.Additionally, Rx is very well shot, directed and even edited. It's not necessarily all that flashy or eye catching, but the way the images are framed and the way the story is goosed along at just the right moment with humor or drama or violence is very skillful.If its main characters had been at all intriguing and there'd been a lot more meat on the bones of this plot, Rx would have been an exceptional low budget flick. As it is, it's a passable diversion but not much more than that.
Although headlined by a talented cast and set in the backdrop of the beautiful Mexican countryside, this film falls short of its goal. Although the director obviously holds high hopes of his film becoming a dark, gritty, drug-smuggling drama, he is too quick to protect a reputation he does not yet have, and instead "Rx" becomes a mediocre, unfeeling, eye-rolling soap opera. From the opening frames of our main characters dancing and laughing together on a ridge overlooking a sunrise to the rolling titles, this film is filled with one let down after another. Just when you think things are getting interesting, you are forced to sigh, roll your eyes, and check the timer on your DVD player to see when this agony will be over. The only redeemable quality within this film is the performance that comes from Mr.Eric Balfour, whose portrayal of Andrew, the kid who's smuggling drugs from Mexico to try an help out his parents, is emotional, believable, and quite frankly, the only thing that keeps this film afloat, at least until its disappointing and abrupt ending. All in all, "Rx" is made up of an unprovocative script fulfilled with unimaginative directing and unoriginal acting. Not a complete waste of time, I enjoyed it. But not an Oscar contender by any means.
I liked the movie, I have seen better ones and I've seen worse ones, overall it was okay. I'm a big Colin Hanks fan and I loved seeing him not play a geek or shy guy for once. His character was funny and I loved his performance (but then again, I'm biased). Eric Balfour didn't really impress me, I didn't really get into his character or could care for what he went through. Lauren German was okay - I liked her chemistry with both guys and her acting was believable. The two gay drug dealers are the best - at first you have to laugh at their antics but then later, they prove that it is not good to try and mess with dealers or steal their money.I'd say this movie is a possible choice for a fun Friday with friends, popcorn and coke.