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365 Ratings

A Monster with a Thousand Heads

Un monstruo de mil cabezas

Directed by Rodrigo Plá
Mexico, 2015
Drama, Thriller


When her insurance company refuses to approve the care her husband needs to survive, Sonia Bonet takes things into her own hands. Up against an unyielding bureaucracy and disinterested workers, she is pushed to her breaking point: with her son in tow, she attempts to fight the system.

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A Monster with a Thousand Heads Directed by Rodrigo Plá

Awards & Festivals

Istanbul Film Festival

2016 | Winner: Golden Tulip (International Competition)

Ariel Awards (Mexico)

2016 | 2 wins including: Best Screenplay Adapted from Another Source

2016 | 6 nominations including: Best Picture

The rigorous formal techniques that mark the work of directors Carlos Reygadas and Amat Escalante provide a foundation for social outrage in A Monster With a Thousand Heads. Shot almost entirely in static set ups and long takes, Rodrigo Plá’s thriller dissects Mexico’s health care failures by pinpointing the small ethical compromises that have fortified such a deep level of bureaucratic rot. It’s lean and mean in the most necessary of ways.
June 14, 2016
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The movie deserves to be known, first of all, as a terrific example of intelligent, captivating film craft—further proof of the recent strength of Mexican cinema… Though increasingly gripping, the film never feels like a conventional thriller. It retains the mesmerizing textures of an art film, thanks in part to cinematographer Odei Zabaleta’s burnished images.
May 11, 2016
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The real star here is Plá, with his total control of the frame. He films each scene from unlikely perspectives… Plá gives each of them their moment, which in turn calls our attention to the ways that indifference, comfort, and ignorance allow cruel systems to persist. And by refracting Sonia’s story through multiple perspectives, the director subtly reminds us that any of these people — any of us, really — could be next. Forget a thousand; this monster has as many heads as it has victims.
May 11, 2016
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