“Latin Boys Go to Hell”
The Flavor of Salsa
“Latin Boys Go to Hell” may not be a movie for everyone but it is an interesting and quite good independent film. It deals with many issues—homosexuality, religion, body culture, and ethnicity and it also touches the Fiesta Fatal (Festival of the Dead), psychoses and parodies the Spanish novella as well. It is a very ambitious movie.
Justin, a gay teenager, is the main character and what happens in his life is our story. Angel, a cousin, arrives from Chicago and Justin realizes that he is in love with him. However, Angel falls for another guy, Andrea who just happens to be the friend of a gay man who is very possessive. As everything goes out of control, drama sets in.
The movie has no pretense—it doesn’t pretend to be a great movie, it is aware that it is a very thin movie with a very fragile script. The characters are trashy but the dialog is very funny and the actors are all good looking. It is a movie that requires no thought—all it s trying to do is to provide a good time. In that, it succeeds very well.
Reminiscent of the early movies of Almodovar and John Waters, it requires a degree of wit and culture to be understood. Much of the humor is subliminal and the sex portrayed is very campy.
From the title, you can expect a campy film or a sexy movie, it is neither, It has camp and it has sex but that is not what defines it. It is not serious drama either. The plot is predictable—what happens to a gay guy who pursues a straight guy. This is a plotline that has been done to death. There is little nudity and the sex is very vanilla. For a film about gay Latinos, this is very, very tame. It just seems to be that if a gay guy is going to lust after a straight guy, the object of that lust should be a knockout. The straight is not only plain in the movie, he is downright ugly.
The movie rests somewhere between a coming of age drama and a spoof of sexploitation films. There is violence in the film with images of castration and the plot is very soap-operatic.
But it is fun and we need fun movies once in a while.