• Name: Below Zero (aka Bajocero)
• Year: 2021
• Country: Spain
• Director: Lluís Quílez
• Main cast: Javier Gutiérrez, Karra Elejalde, Luis Callejo
• Runtime: 106 minutes
• Production company: Morena Films, Amorós Producciones, Film Factory, Netflix
“You know what they say, the only interesting lives are those of artists and criminals“, says Ramis, the character played by Luis Callejo, while remembering he used to be a singer. “But I was better at opening doors“; like him, a bunch of apprehended criminals is being transferred from one prison to another on a very cold, quiet night. But what should only be a police routine operation turns out to be an unsuspected assault, where things are not exactly what they seem to be: will the armored van keep them from their desired freedom? Or is there something more valuable than that?
“Rules aren’t there to be relaxed, Montesinos (…); I keep it simple and just follow the rules“ advices Martin (Javier Gutiérrez) to his fellow policeman before starting the transfer. A balanced duo of good cop & bad cop to do the job and hold at bay the prisoners’ souls. But what happens when the situation gets out of hand? Will he still be able to stick to the rules?
Below Zero (2021), the second feature film directed by Lluís Quílez, is an action crime movie that tries to turn around the genre clichés with some plot twists; being successful some times more than others, the result is a quite entertaining ride to the most primal human instinct of survival. Without excesses and without becoming too predictable, and with Karra Elejalde (Timecrimes (2007), Airbag (1997)) completing a cast of gifted actors.
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