Rudo y Cursi

Soccer provides the backdrop for this rowdy, ramshackle comedy about two brothers — Gael García Bernal and Diego Luna, reunited after the terrific Y Tu Mamá También — who find themselves (cliché No. 1) opponents on the playing field. Beto (Luna) and Tato (García Bernal) work on a banana plantation in Mexico until sports agent Batuta (Guillermo Francella) provides (cliché No. 2) a chance at the big time. Beto the goalie is nicknamed Rudo (tough), and Tato, who dreams of a singing career in Texas, is called Cursi (corny), leading to (cliché No. 3) big problems. More conflict is sparked by hookers, gangsters, drugs and (insert your own cliché No. 4). Luna and García Bernal display the kind of chemistry that makes you overlook the clichés in the script by first-time director Carlos Cuarón. Sometimes good-natured fun is enough.

From The Archives Issue 131: March 29, 1973