Critic: The Thin Yellow Line

Critic: The Thin Yellow Line

Dir. Celso García

Official Selection Feature Mexico

Linea amarilla3The Richter Scale says: We all need a guide. Life is too complicated and overwhelming to have to go through it alone, which is why it’s important to have a guide to give you an idea where you’re going. One example is the yellow line in the middle of the road that tells you on which side of the road you should be driving on. That line doesn’t get there by itself. In his feature debut, Celso R. García explores the story of a team whose misión is to Paint the yellow line in the middle of the road from San Carlos to San Jacinto. They have two weeks to paint 217 kilometers and on the way, these five men will face different obstacles on the road, including those that arise from the conflict among them.

The film’s greatest strength is its character creation. Our protagonist is Don Toño (Damián Alcázar), a man in his early 60’s who was just fired from his job as a night guard and as he’s looking for a new job, an old foreman of his recognizes him and offers him this job. The team is made up of Gabriel (Joaquín Cosío), a driver who had to quit driving due to problems qith his eyesight, , Atayde (Silverio Palacios) who used to work in a circus, Mario (Gustavo Sánchez Parra), a man who spent time in prison for stealing and is still fighting the impulse to steal, and Pablo (Américo Hollander) a young man who was abandoned by his father and has had to get by on his own. Each one of these men has a story and baggage that they bring to the road and the actors have such natural chemistry with each other that it doesn’t even feel like they’re acting, which helps the flow of the film.

Linea amarillaWe spend most of this film on the road, but it’s never boring, because the script keeps offering new situations for these characters to face (including rain and a truck that keeps breaking down) and it’s constantly finding moments for our characters to visit a nearby town or a house on the road they can take shelter in so the audience can get to know them a Little better. It’s a more traditional structure than we’ve seen throughout the festival and even though it suffers from an unnecessary final twist, it has an excellent handle of humor and a keen sense of masculinity in the different forms we see in these five characters.

This film will screen at 2:00 pm at the Juárez Theater.

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