The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada
2006
Tommy Lee Jones stars in and directs this dark drama set on the Texas-Mexico border. After accidentally killing a man, heartless border patrol officer Mike (Barry Pepper) quickly buries the body in an unmarked grave. But ranch foreman Pete Perkins (Jones) learns of his friend's death, kidnaps Mike and drags him on a harrowing journey to Mexico to bury the man in his hometown. Julio Cesar Cedillo, January Jones and Dwight Yoakam co-star.

Scott Hardie: “It ruled.”

Hell exists on Earth and Tommy Lee Jones evokes it perfectly in his first feature film, as his characters traverse a vast, scorching stretch of southern Texan wasteland with only enough water and shoes for one of them. The film is at times funny and quirky, but this epic journey into a desert inferno takes it to a whole different level, where a man careless towards others learns how careless the universe can be towards him. Depending on your outlook, that lesson might inspire you to laughs or to tears (or both), but either way the film can be deeply moving. It's a statement of personal values – namely, that a life has meaning when you give it one – by Jones, a star who has always exuded integrity and now invests his film with it. His unpredictable tale gives us funny characters, a harrowing journey over the Mexican border, and a hell of a lot to think about.

− March 18, 2007 • more by Scottlog in or create an account to reply

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