A breakthrough film for modern Mexican cinema, Alejandro Gonzalez Iñarritu’s brilliant debut immerses us in the chaos and noise of Mexico City, where poverty, violence, corruption and shattered dreams are a way of life. Accidentally drawn into the world of illegal dog-fighting, teenager Octavio dreams of using his champion dog’s winnings to run off with his violent brother’s young wife and baby. Later, fleeing from some rival dog owners, Octavio and his friend are involved in a road accident. Meanwhile, middle aged Daniel leaves his wife and children for a beautiful model, but their connubial bliss is cut short by this same car accident. The lives of all the characters are tangentially linked by the accident in Guillermo Arriaga Jordan’s multi-layered script. A fierce humanity underpins Iñarritu’s approach to his all too human protagonists, who survive with their lives, love and loyalty barely intact. Likewise, cinematographer Rodrigo Prieto’s kinetic, often hand-held images put us right inside the action, his camera observing the characters with an unflinching but always sympathetic eye. Billed as ‘the Mexican Pulp Fiction’, Amores Perros not only lived up to its advance hype, it confidently surpassed it.