The Tiger of Santa Julia | Chicago Reader

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The early 20th-century bandit Jesus Negrete was mythologized as a Robin Hood figure in the contemporary Mexican broadside press, and this 2002 comic adventure by writer-director Alejandro Gamboa offers a sardonic, media-savvy take on his career. After wandering into town and saving a woman from her abusive husband, Negrete (Miguel Rodarte) is taken under the wing of a sly editor who promotes him as the righteous “Tiger of Santa Julia.” A gang of rebellious women accumulates around the handsome desperado, but then group sex leads to jealousy and a deadly betrayal. The overall tone of the film is too light to accommodate its frequently sadistic violence: think of The Wild Bunch with raven-haired babes standing in for Ernest Borgnine and Warren Oates. 120 min.

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