Men With Guns
In Men With Guns, the powerful new film by John Sayles (Lone Star, Matewan, The Secret of Roan Inish), Argentine actor Federico Luppi plays a wealthy city doctor in an unspecified Central or South American country; while on vacation, he seeks out the students he trained several years before to work in the isolated Indian communities. As he moves from one village to another, encountering nothing but stories of slaughter, he accumulates companions in the form of a deserter soldier, a survival-savvy orphan, and a runaway priest. Together they slowly begin to work their way toward an untouched safe haven rumored to exist high in the hills. Part road movie, part political drama, Men With Guns worksas all of Sayles' more political films doas both a compelling narrative and as something meant to convey a message, in this case a simple but important one about the way men with guns, whomever they represent, get in the way of much of the world's happiness. A sad, solemn performance by Luppi anchors the film, as he convincingly portrays an educated, cultured man who is shockingly ignorant and ignorantly shocked when confronted with the casual slaughter taking place in his own country. Though the subject matter and the fact that it's not in English pretty much guarantee that fewer people will see Men With Guns than saw Sayles' excellent Lone Star, this is another indispensable work from one of America's best directors.