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I Won’t Let You Down

A big budget spinoff of Spanish TV's "Companeros," youth drama "I Won't Let You Down" did terrific B.O. over its first week at home but has limited prospects beyond territories where the program's been shown. Designed as crowd-pleasing product, it pretty much succeeds, with a clutch of strong perfs hoisting it above the norm.

With:
With: Eva Santolaria, Antonio Hortelano, Fernando Guillen Cuervo, Sancho Gracia, Julian Gonzalez, Melani Olivares.

A big budget spinoff of Spanish TV’s “Companeros,” youth drama “I Won’t Let You Down” did terrific B.O. over its first week at home but has limited prospects beyond territories where the program’s been shown. Designed as crowd-pleasing product, it pretty much succeeds, with a clutch of strong perfs hoisting it above the norm. First-time helmer and scripters have studied the rule book, and the result is a well-crafted slice of pleasant, politically correct nonsense that hangs together despite wild swings between genres and moods.

Three years after leaving school, teen rebel Valle (Eva Santolaria) is dancing in a nightclub owned by sexy, suspicious Ray (Fernando Guillen Cuervo); Valle’s ex-b.f., Quimi (Antonio Hortelano), is running a scrap yard and wondering whether to get back with her. Valle and Quimi get involved in an unlikely but energetic tale of drug smuggling, involving a creepy Mafioso type, Sandro (Sancho Gracia). Emotional and physical action comes thick and fast, and is increasingly divorced from plausibility: There’s at least one budget-burning car chase too many. Santolaria and Hortelano make an engaging central couple, while attractive Melani Olivares as a cokehead delivers the best comic moments.

I Won't Let You Down

Spain

Production: A Columbia TriStar (Spain) release of a Globomedia/Ensueno Film production, in association with Antena 3, Via Digital. Executive producers, Alfonso Mardones, Tedy Villalba, Concha Huerta, Manuel Valdivia, Daniel Ecija. Directed by Manuel Rios San Martin. Screenplay, Rios San Martin, Nuria Bueno.

Crew: Camera (color), Tote Trenas Fernandez; editor, Fernando Pardo; music, Daniel Sanchez de la Hera. Reviewed at Palacio de la Prensa, Madrid, March 11, 2001. Running time: 112 MIN.

With: With: Eva Santolaria, Antonio Hortelano, Fernando Guillen Cuervo, Sancho Gracia, Julian Gonzalez, Melani Olivares.

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