of the week
action begins with Mexico City policemen banging on the door of
what seems to be an abandoned house. Ulises (Damian Alcazar) and
his partner enter the house and find gruesome remnants of animal
sacrifices and human remains. The two are ambushed by the occupants
and Ulises is forced to watch them torture and mutilate his partner
until he is decapitated. Ulises is shot in the leg and is allowed
to live to warn other law enforcement officials to stay out of their
year later, Ed (Brian Presley), Henry (Jake Muxworthy) and Phil
(Rider Strong), three recent Texas college grads, are enjoying a
college beach bonfire in Galveston, Texas. They decide to head down
to Mexico for the week to hit up the strip clubs and take advantage
of a lack of law enforcement.
meets a bartender named Valeria (Martha Higareda) after being stabbed
defending her in a barfight and falls in love with her, while Henry
sets Phil up for his first sexual encounter with a prostitute, who
is "barely 17". Phil immediately falls in love with the
prostitute, who he quickly finds out has a baby. The boys, Valeria
and her cousin Lupe (Francesca Guillen) indulge in some hallucinogenic
mushrooms before going to a carnival. Phil leaves early to give
the prostitute's baby a teddy bear, and as he walks from the carnival
alone, Phil reluctantly gets into a car with a couple of men who
proceed to abduct him when he tries to leave.
next morning, Henry and Ed notice that Phil did not come back, and
the two begin to investigate, eventually teaming up with Ulises,
after Henry gets shot and they find the local authorities and the
townspeople utterly terrified of Phil's captors. Phil is revealed
to be kept in a shack on a ranch under the watch of a man named
Randall (Sean Astin), who wounds Phil after he tries to escape.
The captors explain that they follow "some African voodoo shit"
called Palo Myombe and are preparing a human sacrifice (a "gringo",
as opposed to the regular Mexican citizens they have been sacrificing)
to get the power of Nganga for their drugs to be invisible to the
border guards while smuggling them into the US.
is later hacked to death by several men with machetes on the roof
of their hotel, and Ed and Valeria decide to go with Ulises to go
kill the men who abducted Phil. By then, it is too late to save
Phil, however that doesn't stop Ulises from shooting the leader
of the cult to death after being shot himself.
Valeria, and Ulises travel down the road to a house inhabited by
an old man, where Ulises bleeds to death. The cult members followed
Ed and Valeria to the house, and the two risk their lives to kill
the remaining members, eventually deciding to swim across the Rio
Grande, two kilometers north of their location.
movie ends with a caption explaining that several kilos of cocaine
were found in containers along with human hair, over fifty bodies
were exhumed from a mass grave at the ranch, Ed and Valeria were
questioned after being caught swimming across the river, and that
several suspects remain at large.
Sean Astin is very much cast against type as the psycho
cult member, Randall. He manages to be effectively frightening while
at the same time displaying a boyish charm and even vulnerability.
But don't let down your guard--Randall is a cold-blooded killer!
See a clip
of his performance here: