23rd Mar2020

‘Humanpersons’ Review

by Alain Elliott

Stars: Luis Fernandez, Roberto Birindelli, María Cecilia Sanchez, Mimi Lazo, Ramiro Meneses, Henry Twohy, Alex O´Dogherty | Written by Pedro García Ríos, Frank Spano | Directed by Frank Spano

Humanpersons-Key-Art

At first there seems to be a whole lot going on in Humanpersons but when put in simpler terms it is about a blackmailed guy having to smuggle a human organ from Latin America to the United States. A Latin America he is returning to after thirty five years.

Maybe unsurprisingly, with its ‘Narcos’ tone and style of story, Humanpersons has a slow pace to it. Despite being set in a dangerous and underground world of crime, drugs and human organ trafficking, there’s not a whole lot of exciting action. Mainly just alot of talking. Of course, this doesn’t have to be a bad thing, plenty of films and filmmakers have been great based on dialogue-heavy movies. But the script has to be enthralling and exciting in its own right to achieve this. Humanpersons tries but never reaches the heights it is clearly aiming for.

So without this great script, what does Humanpersons have going for it? Well, despite his lack of experience, director Frank Spano shows a lot of promise. The film at times, looks great and although the budget is low, the camera work almost makes you forget that. Plenty of credit has to go to cinematographer Gabo Guerra, who is more experienced than the director. Some of the camera movement is fantastic, not something I generally notice so it has to be good for me to take note. Some scenes seamlessly run together because of the camera work and some of the high overhead shots are stunning. You’d be forgiven for thinking you were watching a Hollywood blockbuster in those moments. One in particular slowly descends on to the lead character lying on the bonnet of his car and it’s expertly filmed. The cinematography really is the high point of Humanpersons.

On the acting side of things, everyone does kind of alright. The leads are clearly the right choices for their roles but they never really excel. While the extras and characters with the odd line, clearly have those roles for a reason. Some don’t even really look the part. I didn’t care for the characters as much as was needed for some of the more intense and emotional scenes.

Some of these scenes are clearly quite hard-hitting and I did occasionally get caught up in the moment but overall I never really got emotionally involved in the story.

The script, like so much of the movie goes up and down in quality and ends up feeling nothing more than average. That said, the ending did work for me and leaves you with the feeling that you haven’t wasted your time. It’s always good to end on a high.

It’s hard to say who would enjoy Humanpersons the most. Perhaps if you like crime-based dramas and the aforementioned Narcos, you’ll the type of person this is made for. So while this want live long in the memory, there’s much worse ways to spend ninety minutes, especially in the current climate when plenty of people have time on their side

*** 3/5

Humanpersons is out now from Uncork’d Entertainment.

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