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Abel review

A young boy attempts to take the place of his absent father in this whimsical Mexican drama

Diego Luna (Y Tu Mama Tambien) steps behind the camera for this slight, whimsical tale about a peculiar Mexican boy (Christopher Ruíz Esparza) who decides he’s his father following a long hospitalisation for an unexplained breakdown.

Initially, his devoted mum and siblings play along, but then the real paternal hothead turns up after a two-year absence.

Luna’s commitment to simply telling the story is admirable – he doesn’t set out to dazzle with first-timer embellishments.

But Abel is blighted by limp plotting and anaemic characters, leaving it as flat as a steamrollered tortilla.

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Available platformsMovie