It gets kind of tedious for those that know Colombia to be confronted by the country’s stigma of being nothing but drug cartels, communist guerrillas, jungle and an anti-American population.
But for the sake of making a few bucks it’s worth giving the ‘Colombia is passion’ or ‘The only risk is wanting to stay’ propaganda a kick up the butt and fall back to Colombia, land of the bad guys, television producer Tim Matheson must’ve thought when he was asked to direct the straight-to-dvd-because-nobody-would-see-it-in-the-cinema-anyway almost blockbuster Behind Enemy Lines: Colombia.
The good part about the film is that you get to see how beautiful Puerto Rico — where the film was shot — is and you learn that Mr. Kennedy can actually speak a whole sentence (just never one with more than ten words).
The bad part about the film is that you get tricked into thinking there’s a McDonalds in Villavicencio like there would be one in Columbia, MA, that Bogotá is so hot you better not bring a jacket, that Colombians hate Americans and that U.S. Navy SEALs are a bunch of dumb asses. “Mr. Kennedy wouldn’t make it a week in the SEALS,” a former marine assured me.
Because CR is a website about Colombia and not a film website, there’s really not much credibility in saying how the explosions aren’t impressive, the special effects at times hilariously crappy, how the plot could have been a lot thicker and the acting should’ve been ten times better to not be the absolute crappy film it’s become now.
For a Colombia fan, there really isn’t much in the movie. It wasn’t shot in Colombia, they say ‘marica’ only once, the women aren’t as beautiful as in most parts of Colombia and its basically about a bunch of stupid muscular gringos in some random Latin American country fighting some random group of (il)legal armed crooks and saying stuff about pride and honor etc. Worst of all, it revives these ideas about Colombia we thought belonged to the past, which, as said in the beginning, is just very tedious and boring.
The film is absolutely perfect not to buy, but to wait for one of those long-distance bus drivers to play it in his freezer-like vehicle while going on one of those 12-hour death-defying, mule-avoiding and life-threatening quests between Colombian cities.