Machete (2010) - Can't Stop the Movies
Can't Stop the Movies

Machete (2010)

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Machete is the latest example of director Robert Rodriguez's tendency for both exploiting his talents and resting on his reputation at the same time. While the movie might is enjoyable and well made, it represents nothing new from the director and, frankly, his style is starting to feel a little old.

Machete is a man of action and few words, played by Rodriguez staple Danny Trejo. He is an ex-Federale, disgraced and left for dead by his nemesis Torrez (Steven Segal). Machete is now living illegally in Texas, trying to make it by day to day. Soon he is picked up by Booth (Jeff Fahey) and asked if he has ever killed a man.

Machete is a man that goes with the flow.

He listens to Booth’s pitch and takes the money to kill Senator McLaughlin (Robert DeNiro), who is taking a hard line stance against illegal immigrants; Booth wants him dead because he is bad for business. After taking the job, Machete quickly learns that is was a set up and is wounded during the assassination attempt. This does not go over well with Machete, leaving him to to uncover the conspiracy and get revenge, one bloody body at a time.

I enjoyed Machete. I laughed out loud at many of the insane moments, I thought the action was done well, and I believe that the outlandish tone was consistent and entertaining throughout. The cast knew the type of film they were making and acted accordingly; it is very evident that all who made the film had a lot of fun doing so.

If what you are in the mood for is a well-made action film that does not take itself seriously, you will find exactly what you are looking for in Machete. I liked the film and would recommend it to anyone that thought the preview looked interesting, but I am hoping for more from Rodriguez in the future.

It has been over 15 years since Robert Rodriguez shot out of the gate with El Mariachi, a VERY low budget action film that was shot independently but felt like a Hollywood film. The movie was really good, but his personal story was better: he financed the film himself by being a test subject for medical companies, and with the money he raised he wrote, directed, shot, edited and composed the film in his garage and won both critical acclaim and a Hollywood deal, showing that he had the drive and talent to go far in the business.

His first studio film was the follow up to El Mariachi, called Desperado, and it was a modest success that built his fan base. He followed Desperado with From Dusk Till Dawn (my personal favorite of his), The Falculty, Spy Kids, Once Upon a Time In Mexico, Sin City and Grindhouse. Other than a few kids movies he made, he has never changed from calling card of stylish violence in a B-movie shell. All of his guns and guts films have been entertaining and demonstrate that he has natural talent that many directors do not have. However, the fact that he keeps making essentially the same type of movie is becoming frustrating.

Over the past 8-10 years, excluding Sin City, his movies have become more and more interested in entertaining himself and making his die-hard fans happy than branching out into something new. I would love to see him try a comedy in the style of the original Pink Panther, or I think he would make a great thriller or crime noir. He always gets the most interesting casts in his films (the cast for Machete alone hadDon Johnson, Robert DeNiro, Jeff Fahey, Michelle Rodriguez, Steven Segal and Lindsay Lohan), and I almost drool at the possibilities of what he could do with this eclectic cadre of actors willing/wanting to work with him. I hope he will do something unique with his next film and forget about making Spy Kids 4.

Machete is probably the best example of Rodriguez’s talent. It takes a true vision to try to purposely make a bad movie but create an entertaining one. I just hope he gets all of the remakes, sequels, and creating movies from fake trailers out of his system and tries to make a truly great film that uses all his talents in a 'pull no punches' tour de force.

Until he decides to make this film, if we have to settle for other works, I hope they all are as fun as Machete.

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Machete (2010)

This film is currently playing in theaters.

Directed by Robert Rodriguez
Starring Danny Trejo and Cheech Marin

Posted by Ryan

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