The Gasoline Thieves

Tribeca Film Festival 2019 Review – ‘The Gasoline Thieves’

In Mexico, the underground business of stealing mass amounts of gasoline is alive and well, with over 40 siphons a day being recorded. Crimes have, in fact, driven gas prices to a new level with little to no end in site. The demand is high, but everything comes with a price, as is depicted in Edgar Nito’s fiery directorial debut The Gasoline Thieves (Hauchicolero), which showcases this dangerous world and what happens when thrown head-first into the chaos.

While attempting to impress his school crush Ana (Regina Reynoso), fourteen year old Lalo (Eduardo Banda) becomes emerged in the dangerous criminal world of illegal gasoline embezzlement. With the cash flowing as quickly as the siphoned fuel, Ana’s interest becomes peeked once she’s gifted a brand new smartphone from Lalo. As events unfold, Lalo’s life soon spirals, with his actions leading him down a path that may soon jeopardize his life, while also endangering the lives of his loved ones around him.

The Gasoline Thieves

Layered with realism and unexpected subplots, The Gasoline Thieves takes you down a path that presents a hellish environment brought forth through poverty and desperation. The gritty landscapes amidst the rundown housing creates verity through art director Omar Conde’s eyes. That, encompassed around Carlo Ayhllon’s entrancing score creates the perfect setting for this tragic plot to unfold. The film expands around contrasting scenery, depicting barren deserts, deep night skies, and landscapes lit up in a fiery blaze. All of these elements set the stage for sequences to present the desired moods and effects sought after by director Nito.

The element of narratives that revolve around current or past events produce a substantial hold on my interest. It is impactful, and demonstrates true horror; a horror that has been tragically experienced by many. I feel it awakens the senses and brings light to important circumstances, which allows for a creative spread for the director to explore. This aspect reigns supreme within The Gasoline Thieves, as you feel a connection to these characters that are in dire straits. Young Lalo is thrown into this illegal world by choice out of sheer curiosity and the need to impress a love interest, all while being unaware of the deadly circumstances. The intense brutality of corrupted youth proves how deep the ferocity of criminals can run within an underworld society, where mercy and forgiveness do not exist.

The Gasoline Thieves

With Tribeca in full throttle, The Gasoline Thieves is one that must be added to your festival list. It is subtle, yet explosive, offering a sense of vigorous thievery while also compassion and sympathy. Director Edgar Nito knocks this debut out of the park with an impressive directorial style containing hints of grind house additives, along with naturalistic acting, especially from first-time performance by Eduardo Banda, who showcases an impressive skill set.

The Gasoline Thieves had its world premiere on Thursday, April 25th and can be seen at the Tribeca Film festival tonight at 8pm, and Thursday, May 2nd at 5:30pm. I definitely recommend you check it out!

The Gasoline Thieves

About Abigail Braman

Abigail loves all-things horror, writing, art, and art history. She is also an oil painter, primarily focusing on macabre subject matters, and writes reviews and does interviews for Nightmarish Conjurings, along with directing a new stop-motion animated horror short film titled, Cadillac Dust. In her spare time, Abigail enjoys spending time with her cat Claude, and playing the banjo.

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