A Skaditch Movie Review: Machete
"In the name of my father... I forgot the rest." - April, Machete (2010)
Twentieth Century Fox, Rated R, 105 minutes.
Directed by: Robert Rodriguez & Ethen Maniquis
Danny Trejo - Machete
Robert De Niro - Senator McLaughlin
Jessica Alba - Sartana
Steven Seagal - Torrez
Michelle Rodriguez - Luz
Jeff Fahey - Booth
Cheech Marin - Padr
Don Johnson - Lt. Stillman
Lindsay Lohan - April
There's nothing like a good, bloody racially charged movie to stir up an already touchy subject, yet that's exactly what Robert Rodriguez did in his new film Machete. This review will be rather simple because it's old school Rodriguez, who loves action, explosions, boobs and bloody violence. Machete has all of the above.
Machete, Danny Trejo, is a federally chasing down his arch nemesis Torrez, Steven Seagal, in order to rescue a kidnapped girl. While initially getting the upper hand Machete is betrayed and forced to watch Torrez execute his wife and we assume is daughter. Left for dead in a burning building Machete is no more.
Three years later, Texas. We are introduced to racial bigotry in the form of Sgt. Stillman, Don Johnson, and Senator McLaughlin, Robert De Niro, who do a little border patrolling and shooting Mexicans they catch crossing it. We see a rebel leader in Luz, Michelle Rodriguez and a immigration agent, Sartana, Jessica Alba, who's loyalties are unclear. Machete has resurfaced as a day laborer who immediately gets the attention of Booth, Jeff Fahey. Booth recruits Machete to assassinate the Senator.
Betrayal and racial tensions boiling over as war is waged. Machete does what's necessary to get the truth and that includes letting the innocent live. I know! Whats the fun in that? Machete then has videotaped sexual relations with Booths wife and daughter, who happens to be Linsay Lohan. I know! There's a lot of fun in that! There's a plethora lot of blood, guts, explosions and violence and when the dust settles almost everybody gets whats coming.
Fade to black.
All politics aside, Machete is just a typical Robert Rodriguez action film. I realize that he want's to raise awareness to a hot button issue and he has done so in an entertaining fashion. I loved the McCain similarity and the cheese that went along with the whole film including an ice cream vendor running to war. While my review of The American talks about homages to the old school films in simplicity and style, Rodriguez has done tributes of his own to the camp acting, cinematography and action of those grind house movies in the late sixties and early seventies. Rodriguez even gives his buddy, Quentin Tarantino, a shout by emulating the Kill Bill church entrance scene. Danny Trejo is pretty one dimensional as Machete and the rest of the cast does the best they can, but Don Johnson is the only one who truly stands out. Machete is what it is, an action film trying to get a message across whether you want it or not. If Raiders of the Lost Ark is playing on screen #1 and Pearl Harbor is playing in #10 I would show Machete on screen #4.