A Chilean, Peruvian and Argentine meet cute in ‘Lusers’ (2015)

Lusers (2015)

Lusers is a delightful comedy of cultural differences as strangers from 3 countries travel the Amazon basin to the WC 2014 final in Brazil. Each of the trio (a Chilean, a Peruvian and an Argentine) is escaping a personal problem (thus a loser), but the trip presents even more challenges. They wreck their vehicle, are pursued by a hitman, are captured by an indigenous tribe, and discover a stolen relic.

For me, the cute part of the movie is the constant banter and watching the men’s friendship build across their cultural barriers. A $2M collaboration by 3 companies in 3 countries, Lusers was meant to appeal to a multi-national audience.

Is it politically incorrect?

However, being American, I’m unaware of the sensitivities of South Americans. I read a review that found the nationalist humor to be crass. Others might be offended by the depictions of the indigenous tribes as either disco-dancing party goers or backward primitives. But first-time Director Ticoy Rodriguez (Chile) probably does not care about political correctness, as he just goes for the laugh.

I highly enjoyed the performances by Carlos Alcántara (sexy Edgar the Peruvian) and Pablo Granados (earthy motormouth Rolo the Argentine). I could watch both men for hours. I also am impressed that the movie was filmed in the Peruvian jungle in Iquitos in April and released by October of that year. I’m looking forward to a sequel!

The full title is Lusers, los amigos no se eligen, or in American parlance, “you can’t chose your friends”.

The soccer

As far as soccer, there is a scene where the 3 middle-aged captives must play soccer for their lives, against 3 highly skilled Amazon tribesmen.

Soccer field in the Amazon
Soccer field in the Amazon

Surprisingly, more soccer action takes place on an Amazon river boat, but on a TV screen. The Brazilian crew sits down to watch the Brazil-Germany game, which as you should know, is the game where Brazil loses in a horrendous and historic 7-0 debacle. The Argentine is unable to keep himself from cheering every German goal. That and other faux pas force the trio to abandon ship. It’s stupidly funny in a mean way, and I suppose the movie title is a reference to Brazil’s team as well.

I noticed that the film does not appear to have been released in Brazil.

Update on Sep-23-2018: I recently traveled to Iquitos and found that futbol is ubiquitous in the Amazon river villages. Every village (as small as 200-300 people) has one or more homemade fields. So to find good players in the Amazon would not be an exaggeration!

7 Soccer Movie Mom Rating = 7