M.A.M.Ó.N.: Monitor Against Mexicans Over Nationwide movie full length review - Trumpsformers
To many, Donald Trump elected as the United States' next President seemed like a bad, sci-fi dystopia.
So, appropriately, Mexican director Ale Damiani playfully rebrands the very real implications of the election as a sci-fi dystopia, with a sharp undercurrent of reappropriative social justice. And hey - who doesn't prefer their politics with a side of gigantic robots? A brazen polemic gilded with a disarming silliness, M.A.M.O.N. would play as an absurdist farce, were its hyperbolic, lower- budget-Michael-Bay destructive antics not metaphoric for a very real fear for an alarming portion of the populations of Mexico, the United States, and ultimately the rest of the world. Regardless, the short remains savagely fun, and the perfect palate-cleanser for all those still rankling from the recent election results.
Although Damiani is hardly ambiguous with his politics (subtlety being one of the characteristics not-so-metaphorically stomped by his gigantic Trump-Bot), he uncompromisingly refuses to let his short cave to doom 'n gloom. This is politics as a Monty Python action blockbuster, and, envisioning Trump's wall along the Mexican border in full effect, Damiani finds a sordid silliness in the visual of all deported Mexican immigrants lobbed over it as if shot from a catapult, stopping just short of a Wilhelm scream. Many of Damiani's funnier zingers are in his sneakier cutaway gags - a jettisoned doctor, mid-heart transplant, frantically attempting to blow dust off the still-beating heart he clutches, and the Mexico/US international relations being conducted through a fast food drive-through speaker being the most sublime. But these sly moments are largely top-heavy, before the second half of the short descends into cruder, explosive carnage. Again, subtlety is history here, but Damiani gives it a gloriously smirking send-off.
So how can Mexico fight back against a gigantic, toupéed, phallic-missile-firing behemoth? Damiani elects a slew of ready Mexican stereotypes as warriors - a passionately pontificating taco stand worker, a gunslinging Mariachi guitarist; even the Mexican diplomat must enter the fray sporting a luchador mask - but they're effortlessly overcome, their culture 'taped over' with slyly edited visions of McDonald's and twerking bikini girls. So who is Mexico's heaven-sent, only hope? Why, a divine rooster, of course. Hey - it's a non-sequitur, but in the "when pigs fly" madness of contemporary politics, you take your saviours where you can get them.
It's unlikely to win any admirers amidst the Trump-supporting segment of the population, but M.A.M.O.N. serves as a delightfully wacky way to blow off steam for those reeling that their science-fiction has turned fact. Watch carefully for a playfully ironic twist ending, too, which grimly insinuates a line of social commentary - be careful what skilled practitioners you exile - too important to restrict to dialogue. If nothing else, M.A.M.O.N.'s outlandishly topical spoofery cements Ale Damiani as not a bad hombre, but as among the ever-elusive "decent people." I assume.