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Nine Queens

Why is it that all Hollywood remakes of foreign language films are so much worse than the original?

I rented a film called Criminal the other day – and after a couple of minutes I realised I had seen it before. Except that it was called Nine Queens, it was Argentinean and it was much, much better.

Okay, unless you speak Spanish you will have to watch Nine Queens with subtitles, but it is well worth the effort – a witty and very entertaining conman caper where you (and the characters) are constantly trying to work out who’s fleecing whom.

(The Nine Queens of the title incidentally refers to a set of stamps that are at the centre of the attempted scam.)

Set in Buenos Aires, the film has a distinctly Latin American feel to it – right down to crucial episode where the bank goes bust – but the story and the interplay between the characters can be enjoyed by anyone.