Review – A Night in Old Mexico

A Night in Old Mexico Poster

A Night in Old Mexico Poster

Red (Robert Duvall) is a cantankerous old coot of a cowboy, being forced into retirement as his ranch is sold out from under him.  More willing to die than wither away in a tin can trailer park, he’s looking for a sign that he’s got more to do in life.

When Red’s grandson he’s never met, Gally, (Jeremy Irvine) randomly shows up, Red takes that as a sign, or at least an excuse, not to ride off into the sunset just yet.  Instead, the two of them go gallivanting, unplanned and unbridled, off to Old Mexico for some dancing, girls, and fun.  Meeting up with some troublemakers with a sack of loot on them promises that things are going to be more exciting than anyone was expecting.

The first thing that came to mind was a more colorful version of last year’s award winning Nebraska as the younger character goes off on a journey of self discovery with the slightly cuckoo older man. A Night in Old Mexico quickly evolves (or devolves) into something completely different though as things turn into something like a tall tale inspired escapade.  There’s some romance thrown in there and some life lessons too.  Some death defying action (seriously, they all should be dead) and some light-hearted comedy.  Red is likeably unlikable and Gally is, well, Gally is a bit of a snot-nosed wippersnapper who may or may not redeem himself.

We also meet Patty Wafers (Angie Cepeda), a nightclub singer who for some reason starts following the two gringos around town.  Her story seems like it has potential to be interesting but we sadly don’t get to see or hear much of it.

The villains in this film are hardly worth a mention, despite the fact that they are out to kill our heroes.  They’re more or less faceless thugs with back stories as thin as a sheets, but it’s not really important – they’re just there to move things forward.

By all means, this movie doesn’t really work.  Much of the dialogue is stilted, the characters dry, and the story unbelievable.  But I can’t deny that it has a certain flavor to it that I enjoyed.  It’s a little bit cornball, maybe a little telenovella, and takes itself seriously enough to be enjoyable, even if it doesn’t go much of anywhere.  It’s sort of an oddball movie that some will probably enjoy, but most will probably not.  I wouldn’t go out of my way to catch a showing, but it isn’t a waste of time either.

Mrs. Hamster did not screen this film

My rating: Two out of five hats

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Trailer:

A Night in Old Mexico moseys into very limited release May 16

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