The Tax Collector Review and Interview by Linda Ruiz
For my family I live! For my family I die! For my family I kill! This visceral growl from David (Bobby Soto) as he destroys El Conejo (Jose Conejo Martin) to save his family, is the theme and truth of ‘ The Tax Collector ‘. David Ayer (Training Day, Bright, Last Watch) once again brings to the screen tales of the hood he grew up in. ‘The Tax Collector’ delves deeper in family loyalty , respect and community which separates it from the cholo drug movie genre into a class of it’s own.
David and his family- Tio Louis ( George Lopez), cousin Lupe ( Chelsea Rendon), wife Alexis (Cinthya Carmona) all work for Wizard (Jimmy Smits), who is the head of this organization currently running the entire operation from jail. Wizard sends weekly orders to the family via swallowed notes places in $1 candy bars and burner phones.
Creeper ( Shia La Beouf) is the enforcer half of ‘The Tax Collector” team. La Beouf gives an nuanced intensity to Creeper, who can be cool, polite or terrifying depending on the situation. The yin to David’s yang , Creeper will be ride with him until the wheels fall off. When Wizards past visits his family, sins and secrets threaten to destroy all that David holds dear and a true King is revealed.
David Ayer spins a tale so deep and so real that you find yourself emotionally invested in this family . Chelsea Rendon, (the only reason why I even reviewed this film) nominated for an Imagen Award for “Vida” has more insight into ‘The Tax Collector “ as well as her next project. Take a listen.