Saturday, July 4, 2009


Bandidas – International title

A 2004 French, Mexican, U.S.A. co-production [Europa Corp., Ultra Film, TF1 Film
Productions (Paris)]
Producer: Luc Besson
Director: Joachim Roenning, Espen Sandberg
Story: Luc Besson
Screenplay: Luc Besson, Robert Mark Kamen
Cinematography: Thierry Arbogast [color]
Music: Eric Serra
Running time: 95 minutes

María Álvarez - Penélope Cruz (Penelope Sanchez)
Sara Sandoval - Salma Hayek (Salma Hayek-Jiminez)
Quentin Cooke - Steve Zahn
Don Diego - Ismael ‘East’ Carlo
Pedro Alvarez - Carlos Cervantes (Gary Cervantes)
Tyler Jackson - Dwight Yoakam
Ashe - Denis Arndt
Clarissa Ashe - Audra Blaser
Bill Buck - Sam Shepard (Samuel Rogers)
Governor - Humberto Elizondo
Brujo - Ernesto Gómez Cruz
Bernardo - Lenny Zundel
Padre Pablo - José Maria Negri
Expl bank director - Edgar Vivar
photographer - Filiberto Estrella (Filiberto Calderón)
Gordo - Yomo Tlazotlalli
Cable bank manager - Justo Martínez
Consuelo - Ana Olellia Murguía
sheriff - Luis Orozco
gate keepers - Terence Strikman (Terence Stickman), Florentino Silva Torres
old peseant - Pedro Gamez
deceased man - Altin Pitrel
little man 40s - Carlos Palacios
100 year old secretaries - Andrea González, Ofelia Herrera
Filly’s owners - Alejandro Campa, Guillermo Panuco, Jorge Ramirez
waiting businessman - Ricardo Ariona (Edgar Morales)
chief secretary - Elena Gonzalez
cleaning girl - Daya Fernandez
regulators - Karl Braun, Julian Sedgwick (Julian Sedgewick), Joseph D. Reitman, Rodolfo Sean, Edgar Tebar, Pascal Greub, Vincent Torres, Erik Prats, Sergio Gonzalez, Armando Alarcon, Eduardo Karam, Christian Arrieta, Ernesto Miyares, Eduardo Corral, Israel Gomez
cave musicians - Constantino Blanco, Manuel Ruiz, Rosalinfo Martinez, Eusebio Reyes
with; Juan Manuel Robledo Rios

The film tells the story of María Álvarez and Sara Sandoval. María is a poor farm-girl whose father is being forced off his land by a cruel US land baron, Tyler Jackson. Sara is the wealthy daughter of the owner of the nearby properties, and has recently returned from Europe where she attended school. In one fell swoop, both María's and Sara's fathers fall under attack by the baron, (Sara's father is killed, María's is shot but survives) giving him free rein in the nearby territories. As an act of revenge, María and Sara become bank robbers, stealing and giving back to the poor Mexicans who had lost their lands.

At first the two are catty and quick to fight over the smallest matters, but under the tutelage of famed bank robber Bill Buck they learn to trust each other. María turns out to be a crack shot and, while Sara can barely hold a gun, she shows that she is an expert with throwing knives.

Angered by the recent attacks by the newly infamous 'Bandidas' Jackson brings in a specialist, criminal investigator, Quentin Cooke. It doesn't take long for Sara and María to hear of this, and they quickly capture Cooke and convince him to help them. He has already figured out that Sara's father was murdered, so realizes that his employer is actually a criminal.

Now there are three robbers, each playing their part in bigger, more ambitious heists. As time goes on, each of the girls competes for Quentin's affections, but he rebukes them since he's engaged. In a move to make the money they've stolen useless, Jackson moves the gold that backs the money on a train up towards U.S. territories. Midway, he decides to steal the gold, betraying the Mexican government. The Bandidas manage to hunt him down, but when they get their chance to kill him, they can't, feeling it would make them no better than him. Jackson manages to draw his gun and almost gets a shot off at María but Sara shoots first, finishing the villain off. In the end Quentin ends up with his fiancée and María and Sara ride off into the sunset, their eyes set on Europe where the banks are, according to Sara, "bigger".

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