Movie Reviews 117 – Machete (2010)

macheteI’ve already reviewed one other ‘pseudo-trailer turned into a real movie’ that was screened as intermission segments for Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez’s Grindhouse double feature of Death Proof and Planet Terror. That was Jason Eisener’s Hobo with a Shotgun. But Machete was really the first ‘official’ movie that was expanded from it’s humble faux trailer origins. The idea behind the Grindhouse movie features was to bring back the grimy exploitation movies of the 70’s. Having false trailers of other such movies was an idea of theirs wasn’t just a great idea, but as we see here and in the latter case, too tempting not to film as real movies.

In the case of Machete Rodriguez himself teamed up with Ethan Maniquis to take on the directorial reins. You can still see the original Machete trailer made for the Grindhouse run on Youtube. Like the Grindhouse movies themselves, Machete footage exhibits false graininess, splotches, scratches and even occasionally ‘jumps’ indicating supposed cut and lost  footage.

Given the time constraints of a teaser these original false trailers didn’t have a lot of story composition to them, focusing on teasing the action, violence, gore, sex, and usually at least one comedic or odd scene thrown in just to put a smile on our face. Danny Trejo is Machete, former mexican cop (Federale) turned henchman for hire, turned scapegoat, turned renegade vigilante. Hey I guess they did fit in quite a lot in that one minute after all. Cheech Marin is Machete’s gun toting priest brother with a license to kill (check off comedic sequence).

The addition to the cast for the movie include Jessica Alba, Michelle Rodriguez, Jeff Fahey, Steven Seagal, Don Johnson, Tom Savini, Lindsay Lohan and Robert DeNiro as a redneck senator no less. How’s that for a cast? What can I say by the movie movie itself? It starts off with a lot gore and a fight scene in which a machete (the hardware not the character) rules. Don’t sweat the details because they don’t matter all that much, much like those movies it pays homage to. It’s a movie called Machete fer chrissakes. Lean back, have a burrito and enjoy.

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