Again this year, Denver Film Festival artistic director Brit Withey is offering his must-see picks for each day of the fest — including many flicks that movie lovers might otherwise miss amid the flood of silver-screen goodies.
Today, he spotlights his choice for Monday, November 9: 600 Miles.
Directed by Gabriel Ripstein
3:45 p.m. Monday, November 9
9:30 p.m. Tuesday, November 10
Mexico's Academy Awards submission for Best Foreign Language film at the next Academy Awards, 600 Miles "is a really disarming little film," says fest artistic director Brit Withey.
"It's about this young kid, probably in his late teens, who is just starting to run guns across the border from Mexico to Arizona. He obviously doesn't have the sort of personality or mettle to be doing this, but his uncle's a big cartel guy, so he's trying to live up to that standard, that responsibility, that need to fill this role."
Before long, Withey continues, the teen "inadvertently, coincidentally runs into an ATF agent played by Tim Roth, and knocks him unconscious. This kid couldn't have done this on purpose if he'd wanted to, but he picks him up — kidnaps him — and starts driving him into Mexico to his uncle's place.
"Most of the movie is a road trip involving these two characters: the ATF agent and this inept drug smuggler. And along the way, they form this kind of uneasy relationship. They keep finding themselves in situations where they have to rely on each other, help each other out, and they form this bond that comes to a head when they get to the uncle's house and the kid has to decide whether or not he's going to hand the agent over."
The film represents the debut for director Gabriel Ripstein, and Withey is impressed with the results. "It's an interesting drama," he allows.
Look below to see the trailer for 600 Miles. To access all the film festival's selections and purchase tickets, click here.