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Is The Film 'Centauro' One Of Netflix's Best Bets In July 2022?

Centauro Centaur Alex Monner Rafa Netflix
Netflix

Ready to sit down and watch Netflix but wondering what your best bet is before you begin? Well, the film “Centauro” (aka “Centaur”) is one of them. The Spanish thriller bowed on the streamer in late June 2022 and will still be there in July 2022 and beyond. Why is it one of your best bets on Netflix?

Get ready to rev your streaming engine because Netflix’s “Centauro” is ready to roar. Have you ever ridden or driven a motorcycle? Or simply played many motocross arcade games (with the motorcycle simulator) back in the day? If you enjoyed the experience, this Spanish film - brilliantly directed by Daniel Calparsoro - will have you shifting into high gear.

Set in Barcelona, “Centauro” follows Rafa (“Unauthorized Living” scene-stealer Àlex Monner), an aspiring motocross racer and port worker in his professional life. In the personal portion of his existence, Rafa is a devoted dad who wants to get back together with his son’s mother (Begoña Vargas, “High Seas”). Before long, “Centauro” deftly connects all of these varying plot lines, converging them into an edge-of-your-seat thriller.

If you loved “Gone in 60 Seconds” or Spain’s “Sky High” and “Toro,” you should find yourself easily enraptured with this Netflix original. Like Nicolas Cage’s character in “Gone in 60 Seconds,” Rafa finds himself using his skill set to ride to the rescue of a loved one. In Rafa’s case, Natalia, the mother of his child, needs his help.

Natalia is robbed of the drug stash she was holding for the top local gang. In the blink of an eye, Natalia is plunged into a $200,000 debt to the gang leader, Carlos (Édgar Vittorino, “Unauthorized Living”). Rafa agrees to run drugs from Marseille into Barcelona on his motorcycle to work off her debt. 

Carlos has the need for speed, and Rafa is theoretically one of the only motorcyclists with the skill capable of doing what Carlos needs to be done. “Centauro” says as much without saying it while also implying Rafa is being naive about the short-lived nature of his deal with Carlos. 

Reality says there will be nothing brief about it. Possibly distracting Rafa from the true depths of the agreement is that the timing for Rafa’s gallant sacrifice could not come at a worse or more precarious time for him. When “Centauro” begins, Rafa is scouted to join an elite team (hello Honda) of motocross racers. 

There is only one spot on the team up for grabs, and a series of competitions (or heats) decide who gets it. Rafa wants to win the spot on the team and his ex, back. Will he succeed? The answers are impossible to guess. It is a white knuckle ride, and Rafa makes for a sympathetic lead character with whom to endure it. 

It helps that the tremendously talented Àlex Monner marvelously brings Rafa to gripping life. A perpetually captivating presence on “Unauthorized Living,” Monner plays an entirely different yet compelling role in “Centauro.” The stakes are high, and the pressure is always on for Rafa, and Monner never lets the audience forget it. 

Àlex Monner reteams with fellow “Unauthorized Living” star Édgar Vittorino, who played Freddy on the now-finished TV series. Vittorino’s screen presence makes him a lightning rod for the camera and viewers all over again.

Édgar Vittorino is a skill he brings to bear in the film “Centauro.” After all, a movie is only as good as its villain. To its credit, there are many fun angles played in a short period, and “Centauro” rides them for all they are worth.

The writing keeps the story moving without sacrificing sense to make it happen. I honestly did not want this ride to end. It is easy to see this universe expanding into a TV series. It can already count on one viewer. “Centauro” will be streaming on Netflix through July 2022 and beyond.

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