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In the Pit(En el hoyo)

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Mexico · 2006
Rated NR · 1h 24m
Director Juan Carlos Rulfo
Starring Salvador Enriquez Castillo, Sofia García López, José Guadalupe Calzada, Isabel Dolores Hernández
Genre Documentary

This documentary shows the stark realities and human struggles of hundreds of Mexican construction laborers as they build Mexico City's enormous Periférico Freeway. These men share stories about their families, individual goals, personal insights into their profession's dangerous nature, and the camaraderie that helps keep them going as they attempt to meet the deadline.

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What are critics saying?


Los Angeles Times by

Equally as perplexing as its lack of perspective is the film's overall shortage of information.


Entertainment Weekly by Lisa Schwarzbaum

The soft-spoken, impressionistic documentary (with a hypnotic score built from the sounds of construction) climaxes with a six-minute helicopter-cam view of the colossal structure to which these somebodies have been dedicating their sweat, and sometimes their very lives.


The New York Times by Manohla Dargis

With In the Pit [Rulfo] isn't advancing any totalizing theory, a treatise on transportation or an argument about alienation; he is, rather simply and elegantly, revealing the secret human face of a seemingly inhuman world.


Washington Post by Philip Kennicott

What Rulfo needs, unfortunately, is what too many trendy directors forsake: some social context, some succinct voice-overs and some talking heads to put the serious issues (urban poverty, urban stress, environmental degradation, corruption) into perspective.


Variety by Robert Koehler

Leo Heiblum's pulsating music and Samuel Larson's dense, fascinating sound editing rewardingly compliment Rulfo's electrifying visuals.


The A.V. Club by Scott Tobias

Rulfo's simple strategy of sticking close to his subjects and allowing them to wax philosophical about their lives and labors pays off.


New York Post by V.A. Musetto

Rulfo adds punch to his material with speeded-up visuals and an eye-popping, six-minute helicopter shot of the entire 10-mile project - which alone is worth the price of admission.


Boston Globe by Wesley Morris

It's an interesting, if dissatisfying rumination on the working people of industry -- how they labor, how they rest, what they think and feel.

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