Partes Usadas (Mexico 2007, 95 min. dir: Aaron Fernandez, cast: Emery Eduardo Granados, Carlos Ceja, Alan Chavez).
This is not a glamorous profession like bank robbing. All it takes to steal cars is a screwdriver and guts. The initiation of Ivan starts in a junk yard. His uncle Jaimie orders him to strip naked, then locks his shirt, pants, and underwear in different wrecked cars. He hands him a window shiv and tells him if he can jimmy the car doors open, he can get his clothes.
Every big city has a section for stolen cars. In LA it’s Bramfield Street in Pacoima. In New York it’s Willet’s Point in Flushing. In Mexico City it’s everywhere. Vast tracts of land set to one purpose: a thieves market for auto parts. Partes Usadas is about the low lifes who steal by night to fill parts orders by day.
You don’t find moments like this in Grand Theft Auto. The fascination of Partes Usadas (Used Parts) is that it looks as low life as the characters it portrays. No lovely lighting or polished dolly moves here. Even the quality of the film looks like it was outdated stock that was stolen.
At first I wanted to click “eject” because the movie has the smell of amateurism. But I got slowly hooked as I realized the lack of style was the style. Emery Eduardo Granados could be another Gael Garcia Bernal if he gets some breaks. Meanwhile Partes Usadas is a primer about what happens when your BMW disappears. Chances are if the police don’t find it in two hours there won’t be enough left to honk the horn.