Back to doing what he does best Robert Rodriguez resurrects his hand crafted, blank faced bad-ass Danny Trejo a.k.a. Machete! With true D grade style infused with spaghetti western comic strip cinematography, Machete Kills pays homage to the true tasteless tackiness that defined the 70′s grind-house classics.
Machete, Mexico’s own assassin, the man of the people, comes back with a vengeance, being hired by the American President to track down a world-terminating villain. But who Machete truly needs to chase keeps you guessing, but not really, as the plot of Machete Kills is so pointless it leaves you cringing in agony.
Rodriguez who wrote, scored, D.O.P’d and directed this sequel, tried to do way too much with such little substance. The story is shockingly bad, the script is hollow and vile, however these traits are what makes his films winners even though, to put it most simply by conventional cookie cutter standards, they suck! But Rodriguez is anything but conventional and thank the heavens! He always pushes the envelope which translates to “fuck you, I’ll do what I want with my art”. The gruesome R-rated violence, ever-so cartoon like, penetrates the screen leaving you dry retching, but if you’re a true Rodriguez fan and follower, would you expect anything less?
The true formula that works so scrumptiously in this magnificent train wreck is the cast. Sofia Vergara sunk her teeth hard into her man-hating Madam Desdemona proving that she has the ability to read beyond the script and view the overall purpose of this cult inspired spoof! Michelle Rodriguez reprises her bad-ass Mexican liberator role as Luz looking damn fine making whatever she says or does irrelevant as she adds to the already fine aesthetically pleasing visuals. Mel Gibson rocks it in his self-mocking role of the power hungry hot-head Luther Voz and makes you realise that this once brilliant groundbreaking actor still has the ability to have an artistic laugh. The one and only self manufactured nut-job, Charlie Sheen (poetically taking the piss by being credited with his birth name Carlos Estevez) plays the President of the United States of America staying true by factoring in his womanising ways. And of course Danny Trejo is…. Danny Trejo, that is all. But the most beautifully constructed character in my eyes was La Camaleón played by four contrasting talents Wolt Goggins, Cuba Gooding Jr., Antonio Banderas and the one and only making her silver screen debut Lady Gaga, (SHE NAILS IT!) Although each actor has only a fraction of a scene to portray this mysterious assassin, they all freakishly made it their own.
Although lagging in pace and momentum, Machete Kills is poetically perfect. Although not as memorable or mind grabbing as the first installment, this sequel leaves a lot to be desired where one liners are concerned, but yet again Rodriguez manages to stay true to his style. His stunning eye for cinematography never fails but what’s more exquisite is his ability to take the current Hollywood trouble makers and flawlessly maneuver them into his artwork, perfectly correlating their real life hilarities to further emphasise the ridiculousness of this brilliantly filthy parody. As a Rodriguez fan however not hardcore (I’m more partial to Tarantino & Miller), I religiously respect his consistent style and mentality of “This is project is mine, 110%… so back off!”, a mind-set only ever seen with Orson Wells, not a common occurrence in today’s cinema. So keep rocking ya style R-Rod no matter what anyone says!!!!!
Comparable life experience to viewing Machete Kills:
Spending ya dollars on a $20 hooker – it’s cheap, dirty, nasty but oh so good, true Rodriguez satisfaction. Classic!