Directed by Eugenio Derbez
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No one should truly be surprised that this heartfelt comedy recently emerged from nowhere to set a U.S. box-office record for the debut of a Spanish-language movie, said Rick Bentley in the Fresno, Calif., Bee. The picture’s star is well-known to Latino audiences, and “it has been years since a film moved so seamlessly from humor to sweetness without coming across as pandering.” Eugenio Derbez, a Mexican star making his directorial debut, portrays an Acapulco playboy who chases an ex to Los Angeles after she leaves a baby on his doorstep, only to be smitten by the girl as he settles into life as an immigrant single father. “Some of the comic bits are a little too broad and silly,” said Bill Goodykoontz inthe Phoenix Arizona Republic. But this father-daughter love story doesn’t go exactly where we expect it to, which makes the sincere performances all the more touching. That “surprisingly dark turn” also transforms Instructions into “a far more interesting package” than it would be if only the subtitles and Mexico jokes distinguished it, said Michael O’Sullivan in The Washington Post. “It’s fluff, but it’s weird fluff.”
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