Machete Kills – 2.5/5 – Movie Reviews by Ry!

Machete KillsMachete Kills – 2.5/5 – B Styled Movies; these kinds of films can be full of cheesy fun, or just be completely lethargic.  No matter which side of the coin they are on, they are meant to be enjoyed with the common knowledge that they are going to be bad.  In that revelation, we get the common motto ‘It’s so bad it is good’.  It may sound confusing, but in the end, it should be fun.  With Machete Kills, for all its cheesiness, you are entertained by it.  Machete Kills can be a fun time, even if it is ridiculous by it’s premise.

Premise: The U.S. government recruits Machete to fight through Mexico in order to take down a revolutionary who looks to launch a weapon of mass destruction.  What entails is a path of destruction, and no matter what happen, Machete will win.

In the main role of Machete, we have Danny Trejo.  He reprises this role from the previous film, and like then, he is still wonderfully engaging as the legend.  Even with this particular person being a one dimensional character, Trejo gives enough life and subtle depth that makes you cheer, cringe and root for him.  He doesn’t have much dialogue, but when he speaks, it is witty because he speaks in third person.  The dialogue will feel cheesy, but the one-liners are comical and memorable.  When it comes to the action, he does well by providing that ‘larger than life’ character on screen.  When it comes to the secondary characters, they are just as excessive as Machete’s persona, but it’s the right amount to make the caricature of the individual stand out.  In these roles you have Mel Gibson as Voz, Demian Bichir as Mendez, Amber Heard as Miss San Antonio, Michelle Rodriguez as Luz, Sofia Vergara as Desdemona, Charlie Sheen/Carlos Estevez as the President, and Antonio Banderas/Cuba Gooding Jr. /Walton Goggins/ and Lady Gaga as the Camaleon.  There are more in the film, but those are strictly cameos from the first.  Including the cameos, these actors do a swell job in providing that comical shtick of a ‘B-style’ character.  In doing that, the cheesy doesn’t edge out the interaction and one-liners.  Even for this, you know the characters are traditional plot points for the film’s progression, so there isn’t anything past the simple amusement.

When it comes to the direction and story, there isn’t much to say.  The direction is straight, simple and nothing to scream amazing about.  The amusing value comes from how director Robert Rodriguez plays the story against the large amount of clichés used within the story’s progress.  Within this structure, the film plays to the audience; showing that the film is basically an exaggeration of satire, while continually overplaying the predictability factor.  In this complexion, we find the characters supersede the story, providing enough value past a ‘general’ tone to find enjoyment.  Even with no purpose to the story or themes, the director must link all points within the films structure.  In the beginning, we find that Machete has been recruited by the President to investigating and take out a crazy revolutionary from Mexico.  From this setup, we follow Machete as he gets into common hijinx as well as ‘super human’ interactions to find this particular person.  In the first half, we get crazy action sequence, some mind bending truths, and obvious suspension of disbelief when it comes to some of Machete’s kills.  Once Machete finds the person, we are introduced to another twist.  Once we move into the second half, the film boils down to a standard mix of action sequences, informative exposition, dire situation and a hero’s redemption.  Even when the film seems to be using unnecessary story elements, you’re entertained. That sweet spot Rodriguez finds in the direction (as mentioned earlier) creates this kind of amusing value.  On the surface, this film is nothing amazing; but in that bad, it is good.  Playing to the audience helps create that mantra, while helps the film get to its eventual climax and ending.

The visuals of the film are pretty much, anything you’d expect from any action film.  You got explosions, standard weaponry and typical set pieces for the White House, Mexico and the southwestern part of the US.  The score helps add to the B Style formula, but nothing more than that.

Overall, Machete Kills is an amusement in its generalities.  Even in that common expectation, it is entertaining within that encapsulated world it creates.  Danny Trejo is great as Machete, and the rest of the cast helps add to the flavor of the film.  There isn’t anything important in the store, visuals or score; you’re just there for the ride.  I will say; if you’re a fan of the first film, you’ll enjoy this.  If you don’t like these kinds of ‘over-the-top’ films, just skip it and wait for another one to watch.

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