Neon Flesh (Carne de neón) [Minor spoilers]: a small-time pimp opens a brothel to impress his mum, unbeknownst to him juggling prostitutes, gangsters and his crazy friends isn’t that easy! From the first frame this stinks of the last 15 years of thugz ‘n’ drugz type geezer movies; a ton of characters introduced one by one with quick cuts, in-frame text and cheeky chappy explanatory narration… it never really aims higher than that. A major weakness is that – although there’s sometimes good intentions in the longer run – individual story elements include: selling a baby, a transvestite getting their meat shot off, buying and disciplining trafficked women, playing Alzheimer’s for laughs, animal porn, a random woman ending up in a porno… it makes the characters hard to like, and some situations difficult to watch. Although it’s not original, the film’s style is perhaps the biggest positive; fast cuts, punchy visuals, slick camerawork… it looks great. You can find a handful of standout performances by heavyweight actors that don’t deserve to be tucked away in a film this schloky – there’s also a few moments of solid drama in the final act, but by then it’s too late. The major downfall with Neon Flesh is the juxtaposed premise: a ‘slapstick comedy/crime caper set in a whorehouse‘. Trying to juggle the upbeat tone and loaded subject matter is too big a task for the director – and although I can usually see through gratuitous violence, smut, and bad taste – this one really goes to town.