Nicholas Gonzalez

'Water & Power' stakes out its turf

'Water & Power' stakes out its turf

The stated goal for the gritty, neo-noir drama "Water & Power" isn't simply to take a deep narrative dive into what one character in the new movie terms the "contrails of corruption" in modern Los Angeles.

According to its writer-director Richard Montoya, the $600,000 indie — which hit 21 theaters across Southern California in limited release on Friday — intends to accomplish for L.A.'s Chicano population what such films as "The Godfather" or "Casino" respectively did for Italian immigrants in New York and Jewish American empire builders in Las Vegas.

That is, capture a coming-of-age moment when an ethnic community goes from being...

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