“Los Chidos” Is Half Flawless, Half Terrible

Los Chidos” played recently at the South By Southwest Film Festival in Austin, Texas. It is the new film by Omar Rodriguez-Lopez, a musician of At the Drive-In and Mars Volta fame.  The movie is a fable that deals with an American stranger who has car trouble and happens on the hapless tire shop owned by the title family, Chidos, and their immoral adventures from that point on.

“Los Chidos” are a mess of a family. The matriarch prays for their worthless souls on a regular basis to no avail — until the Lord enlightens her to do what must be done.

What works: The first half of this movie is almost flawless. The comedic timing by the characters cuts deep. I found myself laughing more at the asides than the main dialogue. Rodriguez-Lopez claimed that his intention was to expose the male psyche — and he does a great job at it. He exposes such themes as domestic abuse and homophobia.

What does not work: This movie unravels into a hot steaming pile of absurdities. The last half of this movie is almost so bad it negates the brilliant first half. I would almost say it’s a “Texas Chainsaw Massacre”-meets-“Freeway”-with a touch of “Y Tu Mamá También.”  It goes from being a movie built on social satire to unsettling fable on the turn of a dime.  This is definitely not a date movie.  Rodriguez Lopez insists that there is a message there, but it is hard to dissect between the severed sex organs, cannibalism and incest.

What the audience reacted to:  The onscreen goriness was too much for a handful of people, who chose to walk out. I cannot blame them, simply because this movie culminates into a scene so outwardly obscene that it makes the ear cutting scene from “Reservoir Dogs” look like “Looks Who’s Talking.”

The only way I would be able to recommend this movie would be if you walked out after the first act because the film simply snowballs into something that needs defending. Rodriguez-Lopez insists that the American stranger suffers the worst fate of all, but I would disagree, given the “Sopranos”-like ending. Rodriguez-Lopez told us that this movie dealt more with the male psyche than race or ethnicity; however, I feel that race and ethnicity do a play a major role in here.

The Mexican Chidos exploit the American stranger for his money, paying off their debts, tabs and alcoholic sensibilities, but in the end he brings them closer together after by executing a revenge plot against a relative of Los Chidos who kidnaps him and leaves him to die.

I liked this movie, but only because I like some pretty messed up things.  I think the last time I turned my head this many times was when I was watching Lawrence Olivier torture Dustin Hoffman in a dentist chair during “Marathon Man.” I do not know if I should feel worse about myself, or simply take a Purel shower in order to make me feel better about my strange tastes.

This is definitely not a date movie.

[Courtesy Image]

Subscribe today!

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Must Read

U.S. citizen detained overnight by ICE – they thought he was undocumented

Victor Landa July 6, 2017

By Victor Landa, NewsTaco (1.5 minute read)  This is startling news. Up until last night at a dinner conversation I believed that the idea that an American citizen would be […]

DIECIOCHO Podcast: Texas Rep. Rafael Anchia – Trump, Gerrymandering and Money

NewsTaco June 8, 2017

By Victor Landa, NewsTaco (1 minute read, 34 minute listen)  It’s safe to say that the just-ended Texas legislative session was the most acrimonious in memory. We can talk for […]

Vietnam War veteran fears he could be deported

Victor Landa July 7, 2017

*This Vietnam veteran, born in Mexico, was awarded two Purple Hearts and given U.S. citizenship after his service. He’s misplaced his documents and after paying $345 the government wants more […]

Ted Cruz gets an earful in McAllen for July 4

Victor Landa July 5, 2017

*I’m posting this because it was mostly Latinos, organizing, protesting, making their voices heard. Everyone needs to know that Latinos in deep South Texas are standing up. VL By Patrick […]

The moment Florida cops pull over an Afro-Latina and find she’s the State Attorney

Victor Landa July 13, 2017

By Victor Landa, NewsTaco Patrol cops in  Orlando, Florida, stopped a white sedan recently becasue they ran the tags and didn’t get a return, plus, the tint on the windows […]

Henry Cisneros: Why Can’t Americans See Latinos Are Country’s ‘Saving Grace’?

Victor Landa July 7, 2017

*Good question. I think it’s because we’re not the ones telling our story. We need to fight for our narrative. VL By Suzanne Gamboa, NBC News (1.5 minute read)  SAN […]

Remembering Gus Garcia, Mexican-American Civil Rights Pioneer

Victor Landa July 27, 2017

By Raul A. Reyes, NBC News (7.5 minute read)   In his heyday, Gus Garcia cut a dashing figure in Texas legal and social circles. He was a key member […]

A Proposed New Tax, Mainly On Latinos, To Pay For Trump’s Border Wall

NewsTaco May 31, 2017

*This happened yesterday, while the rest of us were mesmerized by the Peckinpahesque implosion of the Trump administration, congress was moving a piece of legislation that would fund the Trumpian […]