Newest Review: ... escape but now everyone is looking for him and Machete must battle to stay alive and bring the bad guys to justice. Blood, Guts and Gore ... more
Machete Don't Text
Member Name: Andy.mack
Advantages: Decent Action movie, fast paced
Disadvantages: Lots of blood & gore, not too much plot
Over the years I've had a bit of a habit of watching just about every movie that Steven Seagal has ever made and although that has waned recently, I was very keen to see Machete. The film is an extended version of a trailer made in 2007 for Grindhouse and now Robert Rodriguez has developed the concept further and turned it into a feature movie. I've read varying reviews of the film and wasn't particularly sure what to expect when I sat down to watch it last night, but I was pretty open and ready to form a considered opinion.
Whilst trying to capture a witness against drug lord Rogelio Torrez, Machete, a Mexican Federale, sees his wife killed and is left for dead. Fast forward 3 years and he illegally crosses the border into Texas to try and start a new life and forget the horrors of the past. In his search for work he is hired to assassinate a US Senator, however there is a double cross and a second shooter who tries to take Machete out. He manages to escape but now everyone is looking for him and Machete must battle to stay alive and bring the bad guys to justice.
Blood, Guts and Gore
It would be fair to say that this is one of the most violent films I have watched in a long time, from heads being chopped off and people being shot in the eye to the scene where Machete uses a guy's intestines to swing out of a window. It's a feature of Rodriguez work that he tends to push the envelope and he certainly does that here. The film flows quite well with stunning special effects, but really lacks in character development. That however is one of the main features of an exploitation film in that it portrays high levels of violence gore and nudity and leaves the character development to a minimum.
I've read a number of reviews of this film that really detract from it because of the lack of development. I wasn't particularly sure of Machete due to the grainy start to the film, but looking back it added a little to the feel of the movie. The script isn't great and the film is full of corny one liners and stilted dialogue, but that is quickly brushed aside by the fast paced action and the excessive gore. It's also amazing that for a man that doesn't say a lot, all of the films beautiful leading ladies seem to fall at his feet.
As the lead character had to be of Mexican origin it was perhaps a no brainer that the role would go to everyone's favourite Mexican bad ass Danny Trejo. If you look back over his CV, he plays this type of role often and it works. He doesn't say a lot but what he does say seems to get results. He seems to have the films leading ladies, played by Jessica Alba, Michelle Rodriguez and Lindsey Lohan, falling at his feet. The performances from Alba and Rodriguez are assured and really add something to the plot, whilst Lohan plays a drug addicted model, perhaps the casting choice there wasn't far off the mark.
The reason I was so keen to see this film though was due to the appearance of Steven Seagal as Mexican drug lord Torrez. Sadly his part was quite restricted and like a number of his films his voice sounded a bit too strained and unnatural. I was sadly disappointed with his role as despite being one of the lead characters he doesn't really contribute much. The main protagonists in the movie are actually Robert De Niro as the Senator and Jeff Fahey as his assistant. Both actors put in good performances that help to keep the action flowing, but I won't say how or why, so as not to give it away.
Better Than I Thought
Even though I have seen better films this year, I did really enjoy Machete. It was a little different and focused on the action with a slight tinge of black comedy to make it successful. I doubt that I would buy it though and was quite glad it was on sky movies. It's a decent film if you like your action movies with plenty of violence, blood and gore. It's a decent movie that held my interest throughout its 105 minute runtime. For fans of Rodriguez this is a good movie but if you don't like your violence too graphic then stay away. For me this is a film that I'd recommend and enjoyed, but probably wouldn't watch again
Summary: Plenty of action, low on storyline