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Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Machete Kills (2013)


In this 2013 sequel to Robert Rodriguez's exploitation movie-homage Machete, spinning off from the fake trailer from the Grindhouse double-feature he did with Quentin Tarantino, after the death of his partner (Jessica Alba), Machete Cortez (Danny Trejo) is hired by the President of the United States of America (Charlie Sheen/Carlos Estevez) to go deep into Mexico in order to stop a mad revolutionary named Mendez (Demián Bechir) from nuking Washington. However, he discovers that Mendez has wired the nuke to launch if his heart stops beating. Now, pursued by assassins and hitmen looking for the bounty placed on their heads, Machete must get Mendez across the border and into America in order to get him to the only man that can diffuse the bomb, the ruthless billionaire genius known as Voz (Mel Gibson).

I personally loved Machete, me being a huge a fan of Robert Rodriguez's films and exploitation movies in general, and while the sequel is entertaining, I don't think it is quite as good as the first one. While the movie is ridiculously over the top, other parts fall flat or seem to have no real reason for being in the film, making it seem more like a parody than a homage to the genre. The screenplay was done by a different writer (in this case Kyle Ward rather than Robert Rodriguez himself), and that really shows. Danny Trejo continues to be his usual badass self, and Michelle Rodriguez is her usual badass self (being the same amazing character she seems to play in every movie... which is a-okay with me [badass Latina action girl with a foul mouth? Yes please!]), but other characters seem underused. Demián Bechir is hilarious, though he gets killed rather pointlessly..., but the various actors who play the assassin known as El Camaléon (Walton Goggins, Cuba Gooding Jr., Lady Gaga, Antonio Banderas) have criminally short parts, which while most are amusing, feels like they should've done more than just their little parts. Sofia Vergara (who I've always kind of had a thing for) is amusing, with her breast gatling guns, but she, like several characters, seems to vanish half-way through the film after the action leaves Mexico and starts to bait for the sequel. Charlie Sheen is amusing, but many of his "jokes" (if you can really call them that...) kind of fall flat as they seem to be based on him two years (like his name's President Rathcock [get it? cock!], or the winning joke in the fake political ad [which I get they're doing a callback to the first movie, but it really felt out of place in this film]). Mel Gibson is hilarious, seeming to have a grand old time playing a goofy over-the-top sci-fi genius billionaire who leads a cult that believes in aliens. However, that is not to say this a bad film. It's fun, and the over-the-top violence and gore make it a fun watch, but I feel like they could've done more (seriously, they use CGI blood. Don't use CGI blood in a Grindhouse homage, use fake. We want it to look fake. That's half the fun of the film).

All in all, I recommend seeing, but if you want a more fun and over-the-top movie, I'd probably direct you to the first one.

My Rating: 3/5

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