The newest addition to exploitation films gives a powerful punch and livens up the end of the summer movie hits.
Based on the 2007 “Grindhouse” trailer, Machete (directed by Robert Rodriguez) is a fast-paced action film that delivers. It is clear that Rodriguez wanted to present his
perspective on immigration, which has been an ongoing topic of debate in the United States today.
At first, the large range in the cast can lead one to believe that a mishmosh of A-list actors does not really mix. From Danny Trejo and Lindsey Lohan to Robert De Niro and Steven Seagal, it may be strange to see them together, but it works. This bizarre mix of actors allows the movie to have a less serious tone, and in the end, create a comedic action film that Rodriguez is known for.
Rodriguez strategically picked the precise actors to portray the personalities he needed to have the right vibe portrayed in Machete. Danny Trejo, who plays Machete, is the perfect person to play someone who has had a rough past, with his raspy tone of voice and worn-out face. Senator McLaughlin, played by Robert DeNiro is a really fun character, one that audiences have not seen DeNiro play before, but was done surprisingly well as the politician who is severely against immigration. Lastly and most surprisingly was Steven Seagal, who played the Mexican drug lord, Torrez. He is also skilled in samurai sword fighting. As Seagal’s first villainous role, it seems as though he was
chosen to add another comedic undertone to the film.
Michelle Rodriguez, Jessica Alba, and Lindsay Lohan were given their ideal female characters in this film. Rodriguez has always played strong female roles in movies such as The Fast and The Furious, Avatar and S.W.A.T, so it was only natural that she portrayed Luz, the female revolutionary. Alba plays Sartana, the immigration officer who initially abides all laws, but later sees that not all laws are right. Alba executes this transition well from naïve woman to a defender of what’s right. Lastly,
Lohan played the smaller role of April, daughter of Booth (played by Jeff Fahey) which oddly enough, resembles her life the last couple of years.
The story begins in Mexico where Machete, a Mexican ex-federale (Trejo) is set up and backstabbed by his boss. Machete loses everything and is forced to leave his native homeland and move to Texas.
Three years later, Machete is hired to assassinate Senator McLaughlin (played by De Niro), who is against illegal immigration. However, Machete is double crossed yet again, thus beginning his journey to seek revenge against the people who have “messed with the wrong Mexican.”
With the help of Luz, Machete’s Brother, Padr (played Cheech Marin) and others, Machete will see that his revenge is finally granted.
On this gory path of vengeance, a majority of the film contains sharp items, guns and massive amounts of blood. Yet these bold acts of violence entertain the audience, because the visuals are over the top. Even if they are computer-animated, the CGI shots are meant to be noticeable, not realistic. This enhances the humorous and fun tone of the movie that makes every scene so entertaining and captivating to watch.
Machete may not be a possible contender for an Oscar this year but it does have potential to hold its own at the box office. With a massive amount of violence, beautiful women, and catchy phrases, audiences will be entertained from beginning to end.