There was some fear that after the huge success of “Spanish affair”, the love affair between the spectators and the Spanish film ended being diluted. The truth is that this did not happen and, indeed, in the end, the film has helped the public to come to theaters to see local productions. In 2015, revenues of the latter have been as great as in 2014, and it seems that the same will happen in 2016 (just look at the box office and check the income of “One hundred years of forgiveness”, “Kiki: El amor se hace” or even “El pregón”). It was expected that “Toro”, the new film by Kike Maíllo, would also join this group.
Basically, “Toro” is a story of multiple vendettas. The main character in the film is a young man who, with his two older brothers, “works” for Romano, an important mobster. However, Toro is determined to stop his criminal life. After a hit goes wrong, things get complicated and the boy ends up in prison while Lopez, one of his brothers, continues to work with Romano. Five years later, Lopez’s daughter is kidnapped, because his father has stolen from his “boss”. Because of this, he enlists the help of Toro, who now has a partner and very little time left in prison (he only goes there to sleep).
The previously mentioned vendettas originate from betrayals, settlings and even an uncontrollable rage caused by the harm caused to a loved one. To narrate, the director Kike Maíllo and screenwriters Rafael Cobos and Fernando Navarro built the tape using a number of film genres: thriller, drama, action … There are even some touches of humor, but they’re quite short, few moments that serve to relieve the tension of the story.
Although the plot lacks originality and sometimes some ups and downs occur during the development of “Toro”, in general, we find ourselves before a competent, entertaining and full of tributes to titles of the 70s and 80s film (although there are references to films that have been premiered a few years ago, with the case of “Drive” which is the most striking, but I’d also dare to mention films ranging from “Old boy” to “Thai-dragon”).
As the film proceeds, “Toro” approaches a brutal climax in which violence takes over the images and which highlights the careful execution of Kike Maíllo and great Arnau Valls Colomer photograph. Joe Crepusculo’s soundtrack is the one thing that convinces me the least of the technical sections of the film. I like the dramatic fragments, but in others, it reminds me about decaffeinated Vangelis or Jean Michel Jarre. The action scenes are where it fails the most, wrongly using the organ. Too bad Kike Maíllo didn’t appeal for Miquel Pardo, with whom he collaborated on an Oysho ad.
The actors of “Toro”
Of course, I can not fail to mention the good work of the cast. Mario Casas retains its characteristic interpretative registration. He is an actor who I like but that, in my opinion, must still learn a lot from his career. However, although he has no charisma or always declaims dialogues with the same form, you have to praise how he was physically prepared for the role (which is found in different fights in which his character is involved).
Luis Tosar is credible as the cowardly brother who gets to Toro in all kinds of problems, while José Sacristán gives life to a restrained villain, not by the actions carried out (which are brutal), but by the fact that he got under the skins of the character without shouting or gesticulating excessively.
Violent and full of winks to other thrillers and action films, "Toro" is a good example of commercial cinema to be done in Spain.