In the Pit 0+

(En el hoyo), Juan Carlos Rulfo, MEX 2006, original version / Czech sub-subtitles, 80 min

Juan Carlos Rulfo is one of a number of Mexican documentary-makers whose work has deservedly attracted a lot of attention over the last 15 years. His striking talent has once again been validated by his latest award-winning film In the Pit, which focuses on the construction of the largest bridge in Mexico City. This ostensibly banal subject holds up a mirror to the Mexican mentality. While following the risky work of labourers, moments shine through which reflect the magic realist atmosphere that is part of life in Latin America. It is a mistake to talk about mystic themes here, because sacrosanct things are part of people's everyday life. The camerawork and the editing produce something that is far removed from an industrial documentary. The accelerated footage, the unusual worm's-eye and bird's-eye views, testimonies that seem cut off from the recorded reality and, above all, the sense of humour and the unflagging belief that everything will work out OK come together to create a whole that gives a relatively clear portrayal of a national mentality. At first glance, a chaotic reality rises up before the viewer, which Europeans would find hard to survive.


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