Heli must try and protect his young family when his 12-year-old sister inadvertently involves them in the brutal drug world. He must battle against the drug cartel that have been angered as well as the corrupt police force.
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Heli, a factory worker in rural Mexico must try and protect his young family when his 12 year old sister inadvertently involves them in the brutal drug world when she agrees to look after some cocaine found by her older boyfriend. When the drug cartel want their drugs back they go after the boyfriend and Heli's young family.Written by
HELI is a Mexican crime film marketed as a dark and disturbing thriller that reveals the terrible fall-out that follows on from an ordinary family falling foul of drug dealing gang members. What reviews also failed to mention is that it's rather dull and stodgy, for the most part.
The problem with HELI is the attempted worthiness; this was conceived as Oscar bait, so there's a level of stillness and artiness throughout. I don't mind arty films per se, but they have to be interesting enough to keep my attention, such as Andrzej Zulawski's POSSESSION. While HELI certainly has plenty of redeeming qualities, such as some quite stunning landscape cinematography, there just isn't enough story to sustain the running time.
The set-up of the film, introducing a poor family in rural Mexico, is okay as things go. Then things get very dark and harrowing with the crime story, including some unflinching torture sequences which offer the sort of stuff we've never seen before. It's truly shocking and easily the best part of the film.
And yet it seems to fizz out after that. The last act goes back to the sedate feel of the early scenes and it proves a real anticlimax compared to what's gone before. I understand the writer/director's intention is to depict the effect of trauma upon ordinary lives, but the characters just aren't interesting or likable enough that you care. HELI had plenty of potential, but that's the issue I had with it: I just didn't care a jot for any of those involved.
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