Monday, September 13, 2010

Machete (2010)

Okay I really wanted to like this movie.  I'm a big fan of those "grind house" movies, and I have fond memories watching them in theaters that were far from stellar, but Machete is in no way a "grind house" film.  It tries and fails miserable. 

First off grind house movies were made with so little money the producers of those films had to come up with ways to exploit them.  A scene that would get audience's tongues talking about.  Here the filmmakers of Machete have enough money to do what they want and they do it poorly.  The movie tries so hard, and doesn't even come close.  The film is played way over the top, and it suffers from it.  Robert Rodriguez who is the director or co-director of the film does it all, and throws everything and the kitchen sink into the film.  The pacing seems all wrong, and it goes from one preposterous scene to another. 

What also takes away from the movie is the actors themselves.  Danny Trejo is the one person I like, but he doesn't do much here.  He sneers, and says a few lines and that's around it.  I would really like to see Danny Trejo in another film where he could use more of his acting ability.  I'm sure he has talent, but in Machete Trejo's talent is wasted.

Also I am a fan of Robert Rodriguez, and yet I feel this film was far from his best.  Does the film have action?  Yes, but Rodriguez hits you  over the head with it.  At a point in the film I felt numb just because of what the filmmaker was throwing at me.  I didn't care for the characters, and I began to watch the clock which is always a bad sign in a movie.

Again I really wanted to like this film, but in all honesty I can't say I did.  Will others?  I'm sure of it.  I mean it does have its share of naked ladies, gun play, and bloody vengeance, so I'm sure it will find its audience.  The one thing that makes me angry is that the filmmakers try to pass this film off as a grind house type of film, and it isn't.  Many of those grind house films were a lot better, and had a story that seemed plausible to some extent.  Machete does not.  It's a check your brains at the door type of movie, and though I have no quarrels with such films I do like my films done with a bit more thought put into them.  Machete is a film that has no thought in it at all except for the message about immigration, and even here Rodriguez does it with a heavy hand thereby missing the message all together.  In essence Machete is just junk food for the senses, and after seeing it you'll forget it as easily as that Twinkie you had.

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