DVD: Los Olvidados (15)

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The Independent Culture

"This film is not optimistic," begins Luis Bunuel's reissued master-piece, as it pans over London, Paris and down into the slums of Mexico City.

After escaping from prison, youthful Jaibo (Roberto Cobo) roams the city's fairgrounds. "The street is better," he says. After wrestling Pedro (the excellent Alfonso Mejia) from his unloving mother, he murders a friend. The power balance between the two is compelling, as Pedro, barely into his teens, struggles with his conscience and Oedipal lust. Bunuel's direction is uncompromising, his solutions to child poverty unsentimental. In a poignant climax, he stays true to his opening promise.