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Cherry Pop

(Jason Clarke, Anna Maria Horsford, Kevin Kline, et al / DVD / R / (2007) 2008 / LGF)

Overview: At once soft-hearted and hard-edged, TRADE provides a compassionate look at an ugly world. In Mexico City, men kidnap13-year-old Adriana (Paulina Gaitan) with the intent of selling her virginity to the highest bidder. Young Polish beauty Veronica (Alicja Bachleda) is held captive by the same men, and they threaten her young son across the ocean. As the criminals mistreat their victims, Veronica is Adriana’s only solace as she is taken farther and farther away from home.

DVD Verdict: I first saw this at the Passion '07 Conference in Atlanta, GA at a special advanced screening, and I have to say that it is one of the most powerful and important films that I have seen in a long while. It portrays the horrors of sex trafficking, and how it affects the victims. The story is of a young man whose young sister is kidnapped and sold into sex trafficking. He teams up with a cop, played by Kevin Kline in a really good performance, and they set off to find her.

There are times when it resorts to cliches, and there are times when the dialogue is less than perfect, but I believe that these are only minor problems, and they did not dilute the film's strong message. I believe that the filmmaker's set out to show us something which is extremely important, something that should be dealt with. I hope that people see this film, and are able to look past the minor criticisms in order to see the bigger picture.

This is a tragic story, but most importantly it is a story of hope and redemption, and the little ways in which God looks after all of us. Rated R for graphic depictions of rape and some language. I wouldn't recommend this for anyone under the age of 17. This is a Widescreen Presentation (1.85:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs and comes with the Special Features of:

Six Deleted Scenes
Making-of Featurette
Audio commentary by Shepard, the original Esquire article ("What I Did on My Summer Vacation") that inspired the film
"From Journalism to Film: Director Richard Shepard Interviews the Writers of the Original Esquire Article"
Theatrical Trailer