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Rated R · 96 minutes · 2009

The gang-bangers and desperate migrants in Cary Fukunaga’s dirty, brutal road-trip drama have one thing in common — they’re drawn like a magnet to the US border, where the mingled destinies of a young hit man named Casper (Edgar Flores) and a young woman named Sayra (Paulina Gaitan) paint an exceedingly bleak picture of hard times in Mexico and points South. Writer-director Fukunaga, an Oakland native, gets nasty, naturalistic performances from his cast of non-actors. Mexican cinematographer Adrian Goldman also shines — the tattooed mareros, the dawn light on a trainload of refugees, etc. So what if Casper and Sayra’s love story happens on the run? It has the hard ring of truth. The US-Mexican co-prod also stars Kristian Ferrer and Tenoch Huerta Mejía (96 min.).
Director: Cary Joji Fukunaga
Writer: Cary Joji Fukunaga
Producer: Amy Kaufman
Cast: Paulina Gaitan, Edgar Flores, Kristyan Ferrer, Tenoch Huerta Mejía, Diana García, Héctor Jiménez, Damayanti Quintanar and Guillermo Villegas

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