The Cool Winds Of The South
They Knew It All
One Last Breath
Loosely based on true events, Brazilian show The Mechanism is a fast paced, dramatically fictionalised crime thriller. With an interesting, well developed cast of characters at its core and a frantic pace throughout, The Mechanism is a breathless ride through the world of corruption in Brazil. Whilst the inconclusive ending does leave the door wide open for a second season, the indecisive way it ends actually works well given the subject matter. At times, The Mechanism is a little too melodramatic, especially in the depiction of the personal lives of the various characters, but a mix of good acting and a thrilling plot line make this a highly enjoyable and well written show.
The Mechanism’s story focuses on a small group of police officers struggling to uncover corruption leading all the way up the chain of command to the most powerful men and women in the country. Led by spunky police officer Verena (Caroline Abras) alongside emotionally unstable Marco Ruffo (Selton Mello), the 8 episodes see an intriguing game of cat and mouse develop between the police and criminals trying to allude them.
What begins as a simple task of capturing known crime boss Ibrahim (Enrique Diaz) quickly escalates to include the highest levels of corruption in the justice system involving judges, politicians and big name company CEOs. The interesting way The Mechanism makes life equally as difficult for the police leading the investigation as it does for the criminals trying to allude them makes for much more of an even playing field and increases the dramatic tension as you question which side will come out victorious in the end. There’s some good work done to flesh out the characters too and there’s an equal amount of screen time given to the effect this investigation has on the character’s personal lives, especially Verena and Marco. Whilst Ibrahim’s past isn’t really explored, there’s more than enough screen time given to show him manipulating and conspiring with various figureheads.
Although the series does make it abundantly clear early on that this is a show that’s been dramatically altered to make for a much more thrilling watch, at times it goes too far, diving into the realm of melodrama that does detract a little from the overall appeal of the show. Thankfully the acting is generally decent all round and there’s some really nicely worked scenes used to emphasise this, especially early on with Marco as he struggles with his internal emotions.
Whilst The Mechanism might not have the same popularity as Narcos or the same criminal-focused viewpoint like El Chapo, this Brazilian crime thriller does just enough to differentiate itself as its own show whilst carving its own place in the crime genre. The melodramatic portrayal of the characters’ personal lives does detract a little from the overall appeal of the series but the great acting from the cast does just enough to overshadow some of the issues here. With an inconclusive ending and a plot rife with thrills and intrigue throughout, The Mechanism is an interesting and enjoyable series that’s well worth checking out, even if there are slightly better options in this category out there.
Verdict - 8/10