This review needs to come with a warning: “Machete” is not the kind of film that wins awards or gets rented for family film night. It doesn’t take itself seriously and it doesn’t have a greater meaning – though at points it may seem like it’s trying to.
“Machete” started out as, and continues to be, a joke. But it does it very well.
Once you accept the suspended reality, racial stereotypes and B-movie clichs, “Machete” becomes a violent ride of pure hilarity.
Director and Writer Robert Rodriguez originally created “Machete” as a fake trailer for the “Grindhouse” films he made with Eli Roth and Quentin Tarantino, who also produced “Machete.” Danny Trejo, who appeared as “Machete” even before the satirical trailer in Rodriguez’s “Spy Kids” franchise, reportedly pestered Rodriguez about making the film.
There is no doubt that Trejo has found the best possible starring role. His expressionless, textured face is the perfect home for the character of “Machete,” a former Mexican federal agent who spends most of the film in America as an illegal immigrant after having his family die at the hands of a brutal drug lord, played by Steven Seagal.
While looking for yard work with other illegal aliens, Machete is framed for attempted murder and finds himself in more political trouble than he has one-liners for.
The film is full of overly dramatic statements about political officers, border control and the Mexican drug trade, but all of that gets lost somewhere in between Machete using a man’s intestines to leap out a window and Lindsey Lohan dressing as a nun.
Despite being a B-movie, “Machete” boasts a noteworthy cast including Jessica Alba as an immigrations officer, Robert De Niro as a corrupt senator and Cheech Marin as the Padre.
It should also be noted that “Machete” is not a movie for the faint of heart and has earned its R rating. Aside from the numerous topless women, there is enough blood in the film to fill one of the Great Lakes.
But for moviegoers who appreciate gore and a good time, “Machete” offers plenty.