One Grave for Three Men, also known as ‘Una tumba para tres‘ is an old-school fashioned, smoking action flick. Guns blazing shootouts, salaried corruption by the local authorities, and a lime wedge of underground recreational activities to top it off.
You try to exit the game, at least take a well-earned vacation from the gunpowder… But one last job always reels you back onto the dock like a freshwater bass. Such is the case for actor Diego Cremonesi’s Víctor in One Grave for Three Men. Flapping around on the moldy brown marina under the thumb of boss Roselli [Chucho Fernández], waiting to be released back to the depths to rest.
Roselli’s crew descends on Victor’s place without invitation to convince him to hit up fellow gangster Carlos [Hernán Márquez] for money owed to Roselli. Aloof and with one giant migraine to accompany him, Victor joins Juan [Daniel Pacheco] and Manuel [Demián Salomón], knowing the retaliation for refusal.
When the trio arrives to Carlos’ residence, he is nowhere to be found until Director Mariano Cattaneo pans to the ceiling. Carlos holds himself steady & still at the ceiling space, waiting to ambush his prey like a vulture.
He leaps into action attacking all three without fear, hopped up on recreational ‘snow’. Bullets whiz through his body to seemingly no avail, as he gets back up again and again. It’s one of the film’s action-packed scenes that sets the tone early.
Eventually one shot too many puts down the lone ranger, as he succumbs to his wounds. Manuel checks his phone, 15 missed calls from boss Roselli… Victor finds out Roselli decided to just speak to Carlos rather than go through with the hit. But it’s too late, Carlos is gone and the trio that did it just dug their own grave. Without lifting a single shovel.
The three men attempt to dress up the situation as Carlos perishing from his own ‘recreational’ habits but soon realize it still won’t explain the holes in his chest. A whiskey bottle at his side is not enough.
Manuel decides to call a sort of witchdoctor & shaman, El Chubu [Emiliano Carrazone] to raise Carlos back to life. El Chubu agrees to the resurrection for a sum of 950 pesos, he brings out the bullets out of Carlos but no life walks. Meanwhile, Manuel locates the bag with the money owed to Roselli and the trio realizes dark desperate powers are no longer needed.
Juan decides to hold up El Chubu at gunpoint for the money paid, only for his plan to backfire entirely. El Chubu turns the tables with his own gun and takes the bag of money and remaining ‘snow’ with him, even asking his female companions to leave his car on the getaway exit.
The two ladies would save the trio from Roselli’s wrath by acting as a momentary distraction. But soon corrupted local authorities would arrive with a Sheriff’s hat. Actor Gerardo Romano plays Comisario Rosas, a man intent on getting his under the books cut at the expense of the community.
A chaotic shootout transcending language barriers, like something out of a western or Tarantino film occurs. The trio use Roselli as a human shield to buy time.
Neighbor Nelly, played by actress Mónica Villa joins the fray, getting revenge on the corrupt Comisario who’s responsible for her niece’s death and its aftermath. Bullets fly from every direction, lead characters disappear in an instant. Tears shed momentarily, rushed decisions made.
It appears only one man is left standing, the Argentina’s Daniel Craig look-alike Victor. Then the surprise shot arrives, its Carlos. Bang, bang.
In a shocker, the resurrection was not a fake after all. He leaves with the money, a graveyard replacing his living room. Cue credits.
One Grave for Three Men is an action film stripped down to the basics with dark humor blended into the recipe. Old school and unforgiving. No heroes. To the last man standing go the spoils.
This Argentinian film is part of Fantaspoa International Fantastic Film Festival of Porto Alegre. Which ran for free on the streaming platform Darkflix, from April 9th through the 18th. All film screenings were geo-blocked to Brazil, with additional details available at www.fantaspoa.com.
– Be sure to read our review of Dancing Mary, which also screened at the Fantaspoa 2021 Film Festival!
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