Monday, July 29, 2013

The Bridge on FX

Will this be the heir to The Shield for FX?  We hope so

The U.S.-Mexican Border
     I have high hopes for The Bridge (FX on Wednesdays at 10 p.m.), which has already aired three episodes.  Set on the U.S.-Mexico border in El Paso and Juarez, it plays as both an investigation of a serial killer with the implication that he is one
among many in northern Mexico and an allegory of the uneasy and complex relations between Americans and Mexicans.  It stars Diane Kruger and Demían Bichir as, respectively, the U.S. and the Mexican detectives that have become unofficial partners.  

Diane Kruger and Damian Bichir
     Kruger and Bichir have been two of the most interesting actors sitting on the cusp of stardom and, perhaps, these roles will take them there.  Kruger’s character has a form of autism where she cannot empathize, while Bichir’s character can fit into any milieu because of his masculine, pragmatic charm, but cannot be completely trusted.  Annabeth Gish is the widow of a horse rancher that she finds out was involved in smuggling illegal immigrants across the border.  That’s the cultural backdrop behind the easy acceptance of the crimes in Mexico because of threats from the drug cartels and the ambivalent investigation of them in the U.S. because too much cooperation could lead to changes in immigration laws.  

     It features Ted Levine as Kruger’s boss with his gravelly voice that sounds like the serial killer’s when supposedly adjusted; Catalina Sandino Moreno, soulful in Paris, Je t’Aime and Maria Full of Grace as Bichir’s wife and about to face more trouble because he’s hooked up with Gish’s character; and Matthew Lillard as a coked-up reporter, who’s been held and almost blown up by the serial killer.
The cinematography captures the grit, astonishing vistas, and poisonous nightshade of the region with aplomb.  It’s gorgeous and it’s intriguing, but so were two other mystery series that started big and went off the rails:  Twin Peaks and The Killing.  I foresee Meredith Stiehm, who worked on both Cold Case and Homeland, expertly steering The Bridge to long-term success.

I don't think they're talking about the bridge that Neil made me.

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