Apocalypto Remove the external influence of the media, and Mel Gibson’s Apocalypto becomes a simple (and superfluous) love story, in which a young native Mayan man named Jaguar Paw (Rudy Youngblood) is forced to undergo many trials in order to be reunited with his pregnant wife and young son. The love story is very straightforward: Jaguar Paw, along with his village mates, is dragged on a painful journey to a Mayan city. There’s a pit stop at the center, where the women are sold off and the men are sacrificed. Jaguar Paw is given a chance to escape, and then for the second half of the movie is chased all the way back to his family. That’s basically it. The big story here is the fact that, in cinematic terms, Gibson’s film is a bold, intuitive, brutal masterpiece. As would be expected from the blood enthusiast who crafted Braveheart and Passion of the Christ, the director spares no body part. From the unflinching removal of still-beating hearts at the chopping block to the Rambo-like guerilla fighting skills of Jaguar Paw, Gibson keeps things all-too-real.