4.5 Stars
Year Released: 1999
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Running Time: 89 minutes
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Set against the backdrop of the Rodney King beating decision and the subsequent riots, a Salvadoran journalist illegally enters the United States to find and kill a man he knows only as Mr. Smith — an American CIA advisor who killed his wife and tortured him.
Carlos Morales (Carlos Riccelli, a top Brazilian actor) sneaks across the US border to track down Mr. Smith. Mr. Smith operated in Carols’ native El Salvador, torturing and killing dissidents. Carlos wants revenge for the killing of his wife and his own bloody torture at the hands of Smith. Carlos meets up with a human rights activist in Los Angeles, who is also trying to track down the mysterious Mr. Smith. After tracking down a man who fits Smith’s description, a congressional candidate named David Miller, Carols takes Miller hostage in his own home. As Los Angeles erupts into violence upon the announcement of the Rodney King beating, Carlos questions Miller relentlessly with no results. Miller admits to nothing and pleads his innocence to Carlos. Ellen arrives, outraged at Carlos’ methods, she convinces Carlos to give up. After Ellen leaves, the film takes a final and surprising twist; the truth is revealed, involving the wife Carlos thought was dead and a final chance at revenge.
An excellent, well-rounded film, The Best Revenge serves up a dish of deceit, intrigue and of course revenge. On a reported $68,000 budget, director Jim Becket has crafted a stylish and compelling example of independent cinema.

Posted on November 8, 1999 in Reviews by

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