watching the illegal mexploitation parody machete brought home to one the following facts: rodrigues returns the compliment. he is as much a fan of south indian blood and gore films as they are of his films as seen in this Rajinikanth sequence from once upon a time in …er Sivaji.
Also, they are lousy at it. Hollywood is. they dont get it. they can’t relate a popular populist tale that sits comfortably with an a mass audience and is , to the overall satisfaction of the post modern studio executive. You think an audience doesn’t know when its being patronized cabarone? choke on your highfalutin tex- mex beans and rice as you watch your effin twentieth century fox effin tex mexploitation frame writhe and hang around your studio boss neck like a necklace of snakes. That will teach you not to toy with your serious mexican filmgoer audience.
What? You thought if you made an illegal immigrant “avatar “, the wetbacks will surrender their hard earned dolores at your turnstiles? what mexican drug boss coke have you guys been smoking?
Machete as a standalone comic book charecter might have been a viable legend for a robert rodrigues film but they had tofuck it up with their fucking irony and framing , didn’t they!
Understand that I am not questioning your editorial or framing choices here roberto, Im just questioning your treatment. Your heart is in the right place, but seriously, would brad pitt have played machete the way you made danny trejo play him? That, roberto, is the true measure of a man…or at least a true south indian film director. watch and learn, kid, watch and learn.
As far as it goes, the Shaft/cleopatra jones like combination of raw flesh and rawer blood does make Machete a film worthy of a retro chic fringe, the earnest political analysis worthy of an incoherent mexican meecha in an inland empire high school makes this twentieth century fox film seem like a rupert murdoch conspiracy to foist a deathwish onto the non white population the film is addressing. Robert rodrigues climbs down from the citedels of style he has constructed with films like El Mariachi and Sin City. This is guts spilled for the meecha cause. The jerky screenplay with its sixty four disparate strands of characters and plot act like the lost sinew between clumps of muscle which are the action sequences.
The Action stands out. like the first fight when the machete cuts down six gunslingers because they are in close proximity, in enclosed space. like when the Machete eviscerates a bad guy and uses his intestines to dangle to the floor below and escape. like when the Machete’s brother is nailed to a cross in his church by the bad guys. like when steven segal (who stands in for Quinten tarantino in this film, to Machete’s robert rodrigues) comits sepukku with a machete standing in for a japanese short sword.
But equally there are cringeworthy parodies. Robert di niro is a “conservative” state senator who is drug cartel financed. Lindsay lohan is a druggie daughter of a texas latino pol, who has a penchant for doing nude scenes for the internet with her mother. The Two cleopatra Jonses in the film (Michelle rodrigues and Jessica Alba) are themselves cringeworthy shadows of their more serious black counterparts. sheba Jones and foxy brown…and the climax of the meecha invading the vigilante compound…by this time every white person will have lost their perspective of precisely WHAT’s a reasonable solution to the wetback problem.
AS the film progresses it tells us to take it less and less seriously, BY the end of the film we have given up all hope of the film being a serious attempt to deliver a set of cojones tothe seriously deprived illegal mexican population . Maybe Roberto is only this joker to whom satisfying the studio system is more important than making an honest resistence film (and many blaxploitation films were deathly serious about their radical politics.
Maybe, when revolution comes, the zapatistas must line up rodrigues along with danny trejo against the wall for this laugh riot. Oh well at least they showed Jessica Alba’s(20th century fox bought and paid for) butt.