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Review: Machete Kills

Oct. 7, 2013by: Chris Bumbray
100%

PLOT: Machete (Danny Trejo) is back and this time he's on a mission for the U.S President (Charlie Sheen...er...Carlos Estevez- embracing his gonzo rep) to kidnap a revolutionary- Mendez The Madman (Demian Bichir) who's got a missile aimed at Washington D.C.

REVIEW: MACHETE made for a great trailer, but as a film it felt like a joke that was spread too thin. Suffice to say, the idea of a bigger, wilder sequel didn't inspire too much confidence, but it turns out MACHETE KILLS is exactly the movie the first one should have been. Maybe it's due to Robert Rodriguez being the sole director this time out (he only co-directed the first one with Ethan Maniquis) but MACHETE KILLS works. It's certainly a dumb film, but it's self-consciously dumb and everyone involved seems to be having a blast. That feeling proves to be contagious.

Once again, Danny Trejo slips into Machete's iconic leather vest, and despite being older than most of the cast of THE EXPENDABLES, it can't be denied this part was made for him. He's like a Latino Charles Bronson on steroids. He's essentially the straight-man for the world of absolute nonsense that surrounds him. While the impact of the role has no doubt been lessened by Trejo's numerous appearances in a seemingly endless series of no-budget genre films, Rodriguez seems to have real affection for him, and it shows.

The one thing I really enjoyed about the first film was the supporting cast, but this one outdoes it. A couple of folks are back, including the great Tom Savini, Michelle Rodriguez, and Jessica Alba (in a reduced role). Alba, is actually more or less replaced by Amber Heard, as a beauty-queen/agent, who seems a good fit for Rodriguez' crazed world. Demian Bichir, who's usually such a serious actor, gets to really play against type as Mendez the schizophrenic, who veers from being an austere revolutionary in one scene, to a crossed-eyed maniac that would have probably been played by Klaus Kinski thirty years ago, in a similar exploitation film.

The big new player in the MACHETE franchise is Mel Gibson. Gibson's never played an all-out baddie before, but his cartoonish, Bond-villain style antagonist is him having more fun than he's had in years. Imagine an evil Riggs, crossed with Hugo Drax from MOONRAKER, and constantly backed up by a retro sci-fi score by Carl Thiel, and you've got a good idea of the fun that Gibson's got in store for us. He single-handedly elevates the movie from being lightly amusing, to really entertaining. If you're a fan of Gibson's work, there's a ton of Easter eggs thrown into the movie, which will not be spoiled here. There are tons of other fun parts, with Cuba Gooding Jr, Antonio Banderas, Sofia Vergara, Vanessa Hudgens, Lady Gaga, William Sadler, and more showing up here and there.

However, just like the first one, MACHETE KILLS is not for everyone. It's corny, brain-cell killing vibe will put off a big chunk of the audience, and not just those who don't get the fact that it's all a joke. Part of the fun of a good exploitation movie is that they're not self-consciously funny. That's not the case here, so it really is a 108 minute gag. Probably the best way to watch MACHETE KILLS is as a send-up of action movies, and I'd wager any five minute stretch of MACHETE KILLS is funnier than the entirety of the SCARY MOVIE franchise. Bring on MACHETE KILLS AGAIN...IN SPACE!

Extra Tidbit: Make sure to stay past the end credits.
Source: JoBlo.com

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8:19AM on 10/08/2013
The first Machete definitely didn't live up to the promise of the Grindhouse trailer. If this movie recaptures some of that style then this should be worth a watch. Trejo's a cool SOB and there's no reason there couldn't be an awesome Machete movie, they just need to nail the grindhouse vibe and don't pull any punches to get a wider audience/softer rating.
The first Machete definitely didn't live up to the promise of the Grindhouse trailer. If this movie recaptures some of that style then this should be worth a watch. Trejo's a cool SOB and there's no reason there couldn't be an awesome Machete movie, they just need to nail the grindhouse vibe and don't pull any punches to get a wider audience/softer rating.
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7:29AM on 10/08/2013
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3:19PM on 10/07/2013
I actually enjoyed the first movie quite a bit, with all of it's over the top, silly antics. This one looks even more fun and I'm glad that it outdoes the first film. Reviews have not been kind, but I think this may be the only site that truly gets it. A 108 minute action gag is good enough for me. And this cast is killer, so I'm certainly down. With Captain Phillips also coming out, it's going to be a good weekend at the theater, I think.
I actually enjoyed the first movie quite a bit, with all of it's over the top, silly antics. This one looks even more fun and I'm glad that it outdoes the first film. Reviews have not been kind, but I think this may be the only site that truly gets it. A 108 minute action gag is good enough for me. And this cast is killer, so I'm certainly down. With Captain Phillips also coming out, it's going to be a good weekend at the theater, I think.
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1:24PM on 10/07/2013

Good review

I actually enjoyed the first MACHETE more than I thought I would: there was some surprising depth to it especially in light of the Arizona "show me your papers" law. Looking forward to catching this one in theatres.
I actually enjoyed the first MACHETE more than I thought I would: there was some surprising depth to it especially in light of the Arizona "show me your papers" law. Looking forward to catching this one in theatres.
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6:09AM on 10/07/2013
Hey, it's Machete movie. Grab some popcorn and enjoy the ride!
Hey, it's Machete movie. Grab some popcorn and enjoy the ride!
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5:24AM on 10/07/2013
I'm happy that Rodriguez has his own production company and can do whatever the fuck he wants and all. But someone needs to tell him that he should stop with the fucking kids flicks and done-to-death Grindhouse throwbacks. He's becoming a caricature of himself. He better not fuck up Sin City 2.
I'm happy that Rodriguez has his own production company and can do whatever the fuck he wants and all. But someone needs to tell him that he should stop with the fucking kids flicks and done-to-death Grindhouse throwbacks. He's becoming a caricature of himself. He better not fuck up Sin City 2.
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2:56AM on 10/07/2013
I very much agree with the review, though I gave it a 6. You probably know right off the bat if this movie is for you or if it isnt. Its exactly what it says on the tin: an egregiously violent, goofy, gleefully tasteless action exploitation flick, heavy on the Tom Savini-style splatter (was fun to see him back as Osiris) and low on that pesky sense-making. Nobody can accuse Robert Rodrguez and gang of false advertising. Machete Kills is so lowbrow that the brows might be mistaken for a
I very much agree with the review, though I gave it a 6. You probably know right off the bat if this movie is for you or if it isnt. Its exactly what it says on the tin: an egregiously violent, goofy, gleefully tasteless action exploitation flick, heavy on the Tom Savini-style splatter (was fun to see him back as Osiris) and low on that pesky sense-making. Nobody can accuse Robert Rodrguez and gang of false advertising. Machete Kills is so lowbrow that the brows might be mistaken for a moustache, but you know what you're getting into and most of the time, it's a very fun ride. Sure, it might seem like Demian Bichir and Mel Gibson are slumming it, but they looked like they were having such a fun time. And the Star Wars jokes were hilarious; didn't expect to see Mel Gibson driving around in a landspeeder.
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