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Sin Fronteras short film review


Directed by: Ricardo Perez-Selsky

Written by: Ricardo Perez-Selsky

Starring: Alexis Johnson, Amber Lee Ettinger, Luis Cubas

Poster for Sin Fronteras showing protagonists.
Movie Poster for Sin Fronteras

In Mexico, a desperate woman goes to extreme lengths in an attempt to get herself and her son across the border, into the United States.

Juliana (Ettinger) plans to escape with her young son Gustavo (Cubas) into the U.S., as she fears their lives are in danger. Elizabeth Sharp (Johnson) is an American woman currently in Mexico and the wife of a Congressman. Juliana spots Elizabeth and forces her at gunpoint to drive her and Gustavo the U.S. border. However Elizabeth sympathizes with Juliana and they earn each other's trust.

This powerful short story takes a look at the brutality and corruption that exists in Mexico and criticizes the unfairness of the United States immigration and border policy.

The film begins with an introduction by Ettinger, explaining how and why she decided to make this project. She is shown looking into the camera, addressing the audience, while there is a brief montage of pictures of herself with family members, friends and behind-the-scenes, while her voice is used as narration. All this is also accompanied by sentimental music.

The film vividly explores the problems that Mexicans have to deal with. There is another montage sequence, during which U.S. Congressman Steven Sharp announces that he will bring stricter measures to the U.S./Mexican border, in order to prevent corruption and violence from entering his country. While he speaks, his voice-over accompanies shots of a cemetery, Mexican gang members with tattoos and armed police having discovered a large quantity of drugs.

Ettinger delivers an emotional performance as a mother who is willing to do anything to protect her son. She does not want to harm anyone and is able to show bravery when needed. Johnson is outstanding as a person who cares about others and is willing to do the right thing.

There are wonderful establishing shots and effective use of parallel editing. There is Mexican music to be heard and the song 'The Promised Land' was a very good choice for the end credits because it sums up the events of the story.

There are emotional scenes, but also violence and a disturbing scene where a rape nearly takes place.

Sin Fronteras shows the strength and kindness of the human spirit. It is a crime drama and can also be viewed as a female buddy road movie. It raises the the issue regarding the U.S. border measures, which of course need to keep trouble out of the country, but on the other hand they prevent good people from escaping the hardships that they endure and starting a new, better life.




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