To call Borderland just another torture porn movie like Hostel would be a mistake. It offers a much broader story that actually fucking happened! With great cinematography and good production values, this isn’t some grainy found footage shit. It reminded me of Eli Roth’s The Green Inferno although the storytelling is much more similar to Turistas, released one year earlier. However, this is a loose adaptation of those horrific events using the familiar formula to bring the story closer to the audience. So, we will be following a group of students on their vacation in Mexico that’s about to go horribly wrong. If you want to know more about what actually happened back in 1989, I will leave the link for the story after the review.

We have come a long way after that incident. Now, there’s a whole new religion blending death, drugs, and faith into one and only: La Santa Muerte. It’s actually quite popular in Mexico, especially among drug dealers and other criminals. Moving on, Borderland excelled at portraying the sheer terror of the events we’re seeing. I mean, it was so fucking immersive that you felt like you’re there and you can’t do anything to stop these horrible events from happening. This brings us to those pretty graphic scenes with a lot of blood and guts, so be ready for them. Although there are just a couple of them, they’re fucking memorable and quite disturbing. 

Ed, Henry, and Phil just finished college and are looking to celebrate that the best way they can. So, the three of them decide to go down to beautiful Mexico and spend their days smoking weed, drinking tequila, and having sex. What they don’t know is that this will be the last vacation for some of them…

Rights from the opening scene, Borderland creates this ominous atmosphere. And not only the locations we will be visiting are creepy but so are the characters. When you see that crazy look in their eyes you simply know they’re for real. Plus you remember that one time when you saw the same look in someone. You know that time when you met that crazy guy or a girl and you simply knew it immediately? When you’re dealing with these delusional or simply insane people, it’s hard to guess what are they going to do next. This creates this tension that Borderland successfully harnesses. Also, great and believable performances helped with that immensely.

Damián Alcázar, one of the best Mexican actors was phenomenal as Ulises along with our three leads. Plus we get the opportunity to see Sean Astin in a pretty strange role. Finally, if you’re looking for similar movies check out Martyrs, Frontier(s), Inside, High Tension, and A Serbian Film. And be aware that all of these are quite nasty and graphic horror movies and that’s the connection to Borderland. If, however, you’re looking for something thematically similar I give you our selection of Occult Movies. Enjoy.

Link for the real story behind Borderland: The Witch Doctor of Matamoros

Director: Zev Berman

Writers: Eric Poppen, Zev Berman

Cast: Brian Presley, Rider Strong, Jake Muxworthy, Beto Cuevas, Martha Higareda, Sean Astin

Fun Facts: In real life, the members of this “religion” really believed they possess supernatural protection and this led to their arrests.

Rating:

IMDb Link: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0452592/

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