Sunday, March 13, 2011

Trade (2007) R - 3½ Stars

Most people are ignorant to the practice of human trafficing going on in many parts of our world today. This movie will sicken you to these facts while taking you on a journey of one young Mexican boy who will go to any length to get his sister back after she is abducted. Young girls, boys and women are kidnapped everyday and if you can't find them within the first 24 hours, chances are they've been sold at auction to the highest bidder, and turned into a sex slave, never to be seen again. Many times it's just for old rich fat men buying themselves a virgin. Gross! This story does have a happy ending but sadly in most cases, they do not.

Jorge's (Cesar Ramos), younger sister, Adriana (Paulina Gaitan), is celebrating her 13th birthday in their small village near Mexico City. Jorge is very excited he has been able to get a new bike for Adriana to ride. But Jorge and his friends robbed a tourist, so he would have enough money to afford it. Jorge's mother knows he could never have that kind of money to buy it and forbids Adriana from riding it. Adriana sneaks out anyway and takes it for a ride. As she notices a car following her she peddles faster trying to get away but the truck catches up to her and pulls her into the truck, joining others already inside like Veronica.

Veronica (Alicja Bachleda), and a friend had just arrived in America and without knowing much English, they were tricked into going with men promising to take them to Los Angeles. As her girlfriend tried to get away, she was hit by a car and Veronica was stuffed into the back of a truck. Adriana unwillingly joins this group of hispanic women and a small boy.

Meanwhile, Jorge sees a boy riding Adriana's bike he thinks the boy has taken it. The boy shows him where the bike was found and Jorge finds Adriana's shoe. He knows someone has taken her and franticaly looks for people to ask. His world is drasticaly uprooted and he feels partly responsible for stealing the money and getting the bike. A man tells Jorge his sister was probably taken by a Russian network of human trafficers, that operate all over the world. He explains, this gang sells women and children at auction over the Internet where they usually end up as sex slaves. He thinks they operate somewhere out of New Jersey.

As a truck approaches for another pick up, Jorge sees his sister inside and steals a car to follow it. When the truck stops, Jorge sees two corrupt police men take bribs and rape of one of the women, Veronica. Jorge follows the truck to Juárez, Mexico and eventually finds the ranch the victims were taken, but he's gotten there too late. Suddenly a car drives up to the property and a Texas lawman Ray (Kevin Kline), gets out. As Ray enters the ranch, Jorge hides in his trunk. His hope is to cross the border into the United States unnoticed. Along the way, he reveals himself to Ray in hopes Ray can help find his sister. Ray takes Jorge straight to the closest police but Jorge flees not trusting the police for help after what he's seen. Ray manages to find Jorge again and this time he offers his personal help to Jorge. Ray too is struggles constantly for clues on what happened to his daughter. She too was kidnapped, never to be seen again. The two form a bond and head off on speculation to New Jersey. With no time to spare, they must find the Internet source and stop the auction before Adriana is gone forever.

Centropolis Entertainment, Claussen & Woebke Filmproduktion
Director: Marco Kreuzpaintner
Writer: José Rivera
Producers: Rosilyn Heller, Roland Emmerich
I viewed 10/10

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