Well, before putting my fingers onto the keyboard, i pondered this movie for quite a while. I missed the prologue, but still, i like it, for its distinct style and way of portraying, and my biggest impression is that it's really a typical Soviet one.
1. about music:
I thought it was an ancient documentary made by whatever country at first, until the last background soundtrack struck an exhilarating chord in my heart, I realized that it could only be a Soviet one. I'm totally not political, but due to my secluded memory traced back to my early ages for the influence of "red revolutionary radicalism" from Soviet countries, I definitely catch the theme (at least to my understanding). For the ending music, it just can't be more soviet and radical (e.g. another famous soviet song is The Sacred War in 1980', and both of them are representative soviet socialism). Sergei put it at the end of the moive, and i guess he did it with an obvious intention - to lay a stress on the circumstances under the revolution of social democracy in Mexico at early 20th century. As a soviet director, the mexican vital land and its contemporary social reformation surely inflamed Sergei's curiosity and fervor. As far as i know, Mexico and other Latin american countries like Chile and Argentina had already achieved success of the reformation of socialism, which unquestionably evoked an echo in the heart of Sergei.
2. about Soviet montage:
Basically this movie is composed of several different sections, with each story contains a particular topic belonging to a specific historical background. Except the maguey part (which signifies oppression and rebellion between serfowners and local slaves), there's nearly no plot! However i think i can tell what those different symbols or props mean when they are been "mechanically" put together. e.g. for the skulls and skeletons part, although people are dancing and even children are eating the sugar skull, since i have no knowledge on the "day of the dead" and because of my own cultural background, i can't persuade myself to accept the fact that it's not a weird festival. Until the last scene which i remember is a close shot of a boy's smiling face, i believe people are really feeling somewhat "happy" that day, and it's probably because their attitude toward death is optimistic. In short, this kind of segmented shots provide me a lot of space of imagination.
3. about aesthetics of violence:
It can hardly be categorized as a strict documentary or a feature film. Some sections have no voice-over at all, with only pure soundtrack, and story-like plot; but others are more like a documentary with a voice-over, but with no plot at all. Sergei put the documentary elements, the scenes for depicting the story plot, and actions like violence all together, forming a somewhat fabricated movie with a scenario which is demonstrated through a documentary way. Thus on the relationship between pure arts and material reality, Sergei stirs up the clear ambit of artificiality and documentary reality, which envelops the ability and the approach for an audience to comprehend the script and the society depicted in the movie by themselves.
I've never watched such kind of movie before. For me, it's so unique.