Heli – DVD Review

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Another gritty Mexican drama highlighting corruption, violence, and the growing impossibility of innocence remaining innocent, Heli is a gripping, well acted piece which will hopefully do well around the world with foreign film aficionados. Heli is the title character, the young man who acts as the alpha in his meager household – living with his wife, child, sister, and father. He and his father have simple, manual labour jobs which keep them at a distance from the apparent all-encompassing threat and allure of drug dealing which surrounds their town. He is having marital struggles with his wife (luckily the film doesn’t go down the terrible trope of showing the wife having an affair), while his young sister is just experiencing the first adolescent pangs of love and lust with an older boy.

Really, this is a film about outside interference. Heli just wants a stable family with an easy life – obviously things could be better, but in a town like his the tendency is that things could be much much worse. When her sister’s boyfriend makes the mistake of stealing some local gangster’s drug stash, all hell breaks loose for Heli. The second half of the film is Heli’s heroic struggle for survival, his refusal to have his own morals and hopes compromised by thugs or police, and his desire beyond his control to have things back to the way the were. In this section of the film we get a number of fairly violent and dark scenes which contrast in a startling way to the more mundane first portion. That isn’t to say the first half is boring, rather it contains many more lighthearted moments, and takes the time to let us learn and care about each character before tearing it all down. The scenes of violence are handled very well, feeling much more real and alarming than the torture porn cousins it resembles.

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The making of documentary gives interesting insight into a director I didn’t know, showing the casting process of mostly first time actors who have basically no experience in the business and instead more closely resemble their characters. It’s interesting to watch their thoughts on the film-making process as they go through it for the first time. The director is clearly a skilled storyteller with a strong handling of character and a good eye for a nerve-jangling moment or memorable shot, and the actors are all very convincing in their roles. I’d recommend this to anyone looking to branch out into foreign or Mexican film, to fans of films like Amores Perros, and to fans of good movies in general.

Have you seen or heard about Heli? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!

Amazon Vine- September 2014

September, September, the most hated month in the Western world, scourge of kids forced to return to education after months of freedom, despised by everyone else who dreads the coming rain and snow. Thanks to Amazon, my month was made brighter and better by a nine-item bounty, including toys and DVDs. What more could I ever want?

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Ahem

I Really Hate My Job (DVD): http://www.amazon.co.uk/Really-Hate-My-Job-DVD/dp/B00IRYXYGS/ref=sr_1_1?s=dvd&ie=UTF8&qid=1427365490&sr=1-1&keywords=i+really+hate+my+job

Starring my beloved Neve, this film was pretty dreadful, with irritating characters and… that’s about it. But Neve makes everything better.

Cannibal: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Cannibal-DVD-Antonio-Torre/dp/B00JXNCR8S/ref=sr_1_2?s=dvd&ie=UTF8&qid=1427365453&sr=1-2&keywords=cannibal

91uYwfjYEOL__SL1500_ A slow-burning drama dealing with a murderous tailor with a taste for human flesh. Not as exploitative or gory as it sounds, or as good.

Heli: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Heli-DVD-Armando-Espitia/dp/B00KL91CKW/ref=sr_1_1?s=dvd&ie=UTF8&qid=1427365179&sr=1-1&keywords=heli

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A decent Mexican film focussing on one family’s struggle with drugs, violence, and corrupt cops. Well acted and with several brutal scenes, it doesn’t make for easy watching.

WWE Superstrikers Slam N Launch Arena: http://www.amazon.co.uk/WWE-Superstrikers-Slam-Launch-Arena/dp/B00IVLIF9I/ref=sr_1_1?s=kids&ie=UTF8&qid=1427365140&sr=1-1&keywords=WWE+Superstrikers+Slam+N+Launch+Arena

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Woo hoo! The sort of ring I always wanted when I was a kid, this one has a number of features to make play all the more exciting.

Crayola Marker Maker: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Crayola-74-7054-U-000-Marker-Maker/dp/B00CI6J8KW/ref=sr_1_1?s=kids&ie=UTF8&qid=1427365074&sr=1-1&keywords=crayola+maker

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A fun tool for arty types which my kids are still a little too young to apprecitate.

LeapFrog LeapBand Activity Tracker (Orange): http://www.amazon.co.uk/LeapFrog-LeapBand-Activity-Tracker-Orange/dp/B00KNT6TEO/ref=sr_1_1?s=kids&ie=UTF8&qid=1427365035&sr=1-1&keywords=activity+tracker+leapfrog

417aXAyJiaLAgain, my eldest is a bit young to get the most out of this, but she enjoys the pseudo-Tamagochi nature and the mini-games.

LeapFrog Learning Friends Play and Discover School Set: http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00JLHVWUU

819DMh5ZxKL__SL1500_A nice addition to the existing houses, figures, and playsets we already have.

Monster High Freaky Fusion Bonita Femur Hybrid Doll: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Monster-High-Freaky-Fusion-Bonita/dp/B00IVFCKEA/ref=sr_1_1?s=kids&ie=UTF8&qid=1427364843&sr=1-1&keywords=bonita+femur

91TKWa5nsoL__SL1500_Another Monster High Doll, and another hit in our house.

Kid Galaxy Morphibians Terrapin: http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00KR2Q3HU

A great little remoted controlled car which zooms through water as easily as over land.