English-language film poster
|Directed by||Alex Cox|
|Produced by||Lorenzo O'Brien|
|Written by||Lorenzo O'Brien|
El Patrullero (aka Highway Patrolman) (1991) is the first Mexican feature film by the British director Alex Cox. It was produced by Lorenzo O'Brien, who also wrote the screenplay, and stars Roberto Sosa, Bruno Bichir, Zaide Silvia Gutiérrez and Vanessa Bauche. The cinematography is by Miguel Garzon and the production designer was Cecilia Montiel, who went on to work on The Mask of Zorro as well as on Cox's Alan Smithee film The Winner.
The film tells the story of a young man, Pedro Rojas (Roberto Sosa) starting his career as a Highway Patrolman in the rural north. He refuses to take part in the corruption in the police force, unlike his friend Anibal Guerrero (Bruno Bichir) who quickly starts taking bribes and peddling contraband.
Gradually, Pedro's high principles are eroded by the hardships of his life. Eventually he takes his first bribe. He is shot in the leg, nagged by his father's ghost and beats up the governor's son. His wife Griselda (Zaide Silvia Gutiérrez), tolerates his relationship with a prostitute, Maribel (Vanessa Bauche), provided it doesn't reflect badly on herself and the money keeps coming in. When Anibal is murdered by drug dealers, Pedro's moral sense re-emerges and he takes revenge. The film ends with Pedro resigning from the Highway Patrol, trying to maintain two families.
Influence and Legacy
The musician James Rutledge released his early music under the name Pedro in reference to the film.
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