In the Pit

"Very Good"

In the Pit Review


Juan Carlos Rulfo wants to show you how the other half lives. In the Pit is a remarkable documentary that gives us a very close look at what it's like to be a down-in-the-dirt manual laborer in a third-world country. What's surprising is how uplifting it is. As the gregarious highway construction workers slave away building a new top deck to a long, elevated freeway that courses through the heart of Mexico City, they really seem to make the best of their humble lives. Bring as much liberal guilt as you want, but they'll just wave it away and hand you a beer.

Among the many workers Rulfo introduces us to is Chabelo, a very small man with a very big smile who is utterly gracious to the film crew, showing them around and sharing his live-and-let-live philosophy of life. Although he's usually filthy (the other workers kid him about it), often has little to eat, and limps away alone at the end of his shift to God knows where, he clearly loves what he does and enjoys spending the day on the job site.

Equally interesting is Vecencio Martinez Vázquez, who sports a long ponytail during the work week but assumes an entirely different persona on the weekends when he puts on cowboy clothes and races horses on the outskirts of town. He's quite the caballero.

Most haunting is an anonymous woman whose job it is to arrange the traffic cones and signs around the construction site as night falls, standing in multiple lanes of stalled traffic enduring the honking and the pollution. In a soft voice she admits she really doesn't know how she goes on and that perhaps she is losing -- or has already lost -- her mind. It's a revealing moment and one of only a few where you get a glimpse of what such a harsh life can do to a person.

Rulfo ends his documentary with a truly memorable shot: a very long helicopter shot that skirts smoothly above the highway deck on which we've spent the previous 90 minutes. On and on it cuts through the city, and the men below climb around on it like ants, with a few of them looking up and waving at the passing camera. It's a spectacular image and one that puts the daily grind of all those downtrodden workers into perspective. They've built something truly amazing.

Aka En el hoyo.

Someone needs some Lava.



In the Pit

Facts and Figures

In Theaters: Friday 25th May 2007

Distributed by: Kino International

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3.5 / 5

IMDB: 7.3 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director: Juan Carlos Rulfo

Producer: Eugenia Montiel, Juan Carlos Rulfo

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Wind River Movie Review

Wind River Movie Review

After writing the superb Sicario and Hell or High Water, Taylor Sheridan moves back into...

The Vault Movie Review

The Vault Movie Review

Filmmakers Dan Bush and Conal Byrne attempt a mash-up of a frantic heist movie with...

Goon: Last of the Enforcers Movie Review

Goon: Last of the Enforcers Movie Review

The 2012 Canadian comedy Goon was one of those surprising little films that snuck up...

Detroit Movie Review

Detroit Movie Review

After The Hurt Locker and Zero Dark Thirty, Kathryn Bigelow and Mark Boal reteam to...

Logan Lucky Movie Review

Logan Lucky Movie Review

Good news: Steven Soderbergh's well-publicised retirement from directing only lasted about four years. He's back...

American Made Movie Review

American Made Movie Review

An enjoyably freewheeling tone and Tom Cruise's star wattage combine to make this an entertaining...

An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power Movie Review

An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power Movie Review

It's been a decade since Al Gore's wake-up-call documentary won the Oscar. And here he...

Advertisement
The Hitman's Bodyguard Movie Review

The Hitman's Bodyguard Movie Review

It really doesn't matter that this movie is utterly ridiculous, because the central pairing of...

Final Portrait Movie Review

Final Portrait Movie Review

A relaxed, amusing true story about noted Swiss painter and sculptor Alberto Giacometti, this sharply...

Tom of Finland Movie Review

Tom of Finland Movie Review

Finnish artist Tuoko Laaksonen used the name "Tom of Finland" as he drew explicit illustrations...

A Ghost Story Movie Review

A Ghost Story Movie Review

Filmmaker David Lowery reunites the stars from his offbeat Western Ain't Them Bodies Saints for...

Atomic Blonde Movie Review

Atomic Blonde Movie Review

From the co-director of John Wick, this similarly styled action romp puts Charlize Theron front...

Girls Trip Movie Review

Girls Trip Movie Review

This movie's premise basically sounds like The Hangover with added black girl power. But it's...

Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie Movie Review

Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie Movie Review

There's so much manic energy in this animated action comedy that it can't help but...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.