Parents' Guide to

Borrego

By Jeffrey M. Anderson, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 15+

Solid but violent desert-survival thriller about drug trade.

Movie R 2022 102 minutes
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Is It Any Good?

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It doesn't always work, especially when cutting away from its two main characters, but this sun-baked, anti-drug desert-survival thriller is solid enough at its center to make it worth a look. Borrego seems serious about its main theme -- showing how drugs can destroy lives -- but it's a tad uneven; it sometimes loses track of that message while wrapping up its thriller plot. Moreover, the main villain, who's depicted as an angry, murderous psychopath, is a little too generic, while the deputy sheriff feels only half-drawn and is a little on the ineffective side. Alex, likewise, is painted as not much more than a typical rebellious teen, with little else to go on.

On the plus side, Elly and Tomas make an interesting team. Even though he first seems to be a threat, we slowly begin to see his humanity, with moments of kindness and humility. The two characters even open up to one another in a few touching moments. Yet they can never get too friendly, since Elly tries to escape whenever she can, and Tomas must stop her. Their relationship springs to life via this tension, and the actors respond with solid performances. Additionally, Borrego makes fine use of its outdoor locations, using darkness and light, sun and shade, canyons and flatlands -- and even desert flowers -- to create effective drama and visual conflict.

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