Belascoarán, PI consists of three episodes, each running for almost 1 hour and 20 minutes. That makes them feature films, which is why the whole series should be labeled as a trilogy. It's certainly not something I would recommend binging. Because its faults become more evident if you watch it continuously.
Belascoarán, PI opens with the shot of a newspaper with the headline "Another Woman Strangled." The camera then follows a woman who soon gets strangled by a stranger. Yes, detective Héctor Belascoarán's (a charming Luis Gerardo Méndez) first case involves a serial strangler. Before entering this profession, Héctor lived with his wife in a luxurious home, thanks to a cushy, high-paying job. One day, he saw a "Be A Detective" ad in the newspaper and decided to follow his passion. He quit his job and started listening to a tape telling him how to become a professional sleuth. He rents a room for his office, which he shares with a plumber named Gomez (Silverio Palacios). His wife? Well, she left him as soon as he pursued his passion.
Each episode deals with a different problem. The first one is about a serial strangler, the second opens with the murder of a union leader, and the third one has the detective fighting against corrupt officials. To be fair, corruption runs deep in this Mexico City. Hence, every episode expands and includes the rot infecting the area. Apart from different cases, each episode introduces us to new characters. There is a girl with a ponytail named Irene (a sexy Paulina Gaitan), who becomes Héctor's lover. Marisa, a famous actress, behaves like a femme fatale. She has a daughter named Virginia (Macarena García Romero), who gets kidnapped. There is Burgos, who's like a father to Virginia. Oh, we also have a corrupt police officer.
Some characters, like Irene and Héctor's sister, Elisa (Irene Azuela), appear in all three episodes. The victims differ, but there is a continuation. It's not like every episode is some sort of sequel with a different story and different side characters. Héctor's favorite beverage is Keli-Cola. He is also an amateur who becomes competent with progression. For instance, his aim becomes accurate while firing a gun. His professional incompetence shines in the second episode, where he juggles between two cases. Because he is not an expert, he fires his gun at the wrong time and is unable to save a girl from getting kidnapped. Something happens with his eyes, metaphorically implying that this man is not cut for handling two tasks together. Since he is no Sherlock Holmes, he mostly gets clues from other characters like hookers and street vendors. They help him because he is good to them. He is rewarded for his kindness. His decision to not shoot a naked police officer helps him escape from somewhere later.
Belascoarán, PI commits itself to the crime/detective genre (there are brooding voice-overs). However, it is too bland and devoid of shocks. Belascoarán, PI doesn't give us the uneasy feeling of walking through hell like Chinatown. Moreover, the twists are not exciting enough to arouse our interest. Events unfold in an ordinary manner as if the show is bored with itself. There are some good jokes, like the one where Héctor attempts to rescue a girl cuffed to a chair, but none of them land. It seems as if the directors don't have an eye for humor. The jokes sound terrific on paper, but their execution is flat. Perhaps, the creators could have used a talented detective behind the camera to help them find flaws in their production.
Final Score – [5/10]
Reviewed by - Vikas Yadav
Follow @vikasonorous on Twitter
Publisher at Midgard Times
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