Bullet Points: Machete
One of my favorite things about Robert Rodriguez films is all of the excellent cameos that he is able to squeeze into them. It’s like watching the commercials during the Super Bowl; there are random celebrities all over the place playing characters that you normally wouldn’t expect. Machete also doesn’t miss a beat when it comes to your average action movie stereotypes. If you haven’t noticed, Robert Rodriguez not only takes advantage of stereotypes, he embraces and shines a light on every beautiful Hispanic thing that he can put in Cheech Marin, Salma Hayek, or Danny Trejo’s characters. You’ll see everything from Lucha Libre masks to racist-ass old white dudes holding political offices in the American Southwest. Just remember, many of these stereotypes exist for a reason.
The Gist: They killed his wife and left him for dead. Now they will have to deal with one pissed off Federale with and affection for machetes. These guys don’t stand a chance.
The Cast: You don’t have Machete without Danny Trejo. Danny already has a following that rivals most A-listers and for good reason. His story is like something out of a movie and he seems so damned cool that the fact he will do about any movie only goes to reinforce how likable of a guy he is. He shares the screen with a bevy of lovely Latin ladies. I could tell you all about how hot they are but you’re better off checking them out for yourself. Start with Jessica Alba and Michelle Rodriguez and you’ll find yourself searching the local RedBox for this film in no time.
Getting through the airport is gonna be a bitch.
The Villain: Robert De Niro, Steven Seagal, and Jeff Fahey all attempt to keep from being impaled by Machete and his assorted killing devices. All three of the men stretch their characters to the max and that is why it absolutely works. You can tell the the actors are having a lot of fun with their portrayals and this film is all about having fun. De Niro is pretty hilarious as the Senator but Seagal as tough guy Torrez takes the cake for me. If you’re an action fan and you don’t want to see Trejo and Seagal go toe to toe then you need to check your friggin’ pulse.
Good to see Seagal out of his usual “old, overweight hero role”.
The Action: The first casualty of the film happens withing the opening three minutes. In one scene, a guy gets stabbed with a meat thermometer and then blown onto a car causing the thermometer to read “extra crispy”. Those two things will give you a pretty good idea of what to expect from RR and his buddies in Machete. It knows exactly what it is and delivers as many laughs as it does gun fights and intestinal un-ravelings. You may also want to see Cheech Marin as a Catholic Priest armed with dual pump shot guns. I know I did.
Michelle looks exceptionally hot in this one.
Take it Home:
- There’s a first time for everything: This is the first time that Steven Seagal has played a full-on villain.
- Double Duty: Filmed at the same time as Predators at Robert Rodriguez’s studio.
- BFF’s: Third time that Trejo and Seagal have been in the same film. Also appeared together in Marked for Death in 1990 and Urban Justice in 2007.
- Favorite Quote: “Machete don’t text.”
The Verdict: Machete is an extremely fun film to watch. At no point does it take itself seriously and if you’re too stupid to realize that then you shouldn’t be watching it. Every movie that Jessica Alba does without nudity will continue to piss me off but there is so much good eye candy in this film that I was able to forget about it for a little while. The character Machete might be Danny Trejo’s lasting triumph. Watch it.