Not a Middle East meditation, but a paean to those children who abandon their homes and find themselves lost among steel faces and false promises. Brooding boxer Israel Mendoza (Von) coulda been a contender. Instead he languishes in a Chicago rooming house, a long way from his Mexican mama. Writer/director Ramirez spins a tale of magic realism, involving religious rituals and symbolic showdowns, although Israel's fight loses momentum midway. In its most affecting moments, this makes the Windy City seem like a really heart-rending place.