It's not very difficult to see the impressive little independent comedy trying to fight its way out of the awkward mishmash of genres in the local film Blood Cousins. As the first movie produced by San Antonio-based sketch comedy troupe Comedia A Go-Go, the humor is infectious, especially when scene-stealer Von (Larry Garza) ambushes the screen. In Blood Cousins, Garza and CAGG cast members Joe Settles (Stevie), Regan Arevalos (Ray), and Jess Castro (Eric), play four cousins who take a road trip to the Rio Grande Valley to visit their grandmother's grave and pay their respects.
When the sarcasm, silliness, and genuine family moments are executed well during the journey, Blood Cousins triggers some hearty laugher. The film, however, gets tripped up by injecting supernatural and horror elements into a story that simply didn't need to veer off into that campy direction.
Fortunately, there's a simple fix: drag the editors back in (even if they are kicking and screaming) and cut off the bookends and all the dream sequences; end the film where it feels natural — at the headstone — and re-title it Primos. Without this major purge, Blood Cousins is a diluted tale of revenge and Mexican folklore that all leads to a final act that will have you wishing CAGG stuck to what they know best.
★★★ (out of 5 stars)
Dir. and writ. Regan Arevalos, Jess Castro, Larry Garza; feat. Joe Settles, Regan Arevalos, Larry Garza, Jess Castro, Roy Lopez Jr., Rodney Garza, Gloria Sanchez
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