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Wednesday, May 21, 2008

INCAUTOS/SWINDLED (2005)

A con artist caper that doesn’t know when to stop conning. Helmer Miguel Bardem jazzes things up with enough voice-over narration, fourth-wall breakage, multi-frame camera action & technical camouflage to do Brian De Palma proud. Victoria Abril stars with an old smoothie (Federico Luppi) and a young smoothie (Ernesto Alterio) as part of a gang that’s about to pull off the biggest trick of their lives (a land buying scam). But are they all on the same team? There are fake priests, government agents, investors, investigators & faux shootings, but Bardem never lets any of the configurations jell before doing a sly reverse. By act three it all starts to feel like a forced exercise. With half the twists, the film might have been twice as good.

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