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[personal profile] innocent_man
Desperado is a Robert Rodriguez film starring the absolutely yummy Antonio Banderas. It's a sequel to El Mariachi, kinda (Banderas wasn't in that one, but it's supposed to be the same character) and is followed by Once Upon a Time in Mexico, which pushes the whole thing even further over the top.

Banderas is El Mariachi, a guitar player whose lover is murdered in front of him by a drug dealer. He is left alive, but wounded, and goes on a hunt for the men responsible, including their boss, Bucho. In the process, he slaughters whole bars full of minions, meets and beds Salma Hayek in a really hot sex scene, and finally discovers the awful truth - Bucho is, in fact, his brother Cesar.

The movie is pretty and the soundtrack is fucking awesome. Banderas is awesome as a brooding, revenge character who is still animated and intense, instead of just dour and boring (see Blade). Hayek, too, manages to imbue a lot of life into a character I'd otherwise call Girlfriend. My favorite scene might where she's stitching him up after he gets shot, because she deliberately waits until he takes a sip of hot water to tell him. She's a little bit of a sadist, and I enjoy that.

The physics in the movie are absurd. The gunwork doesn't make any sense. Who cares. The gun battles are fun to watch, and I love that when El Mariachi performs his little ritual (praying, tying his hair back), he's invincible, but if you catch him off guard he's vulnerable. There's a magical realism at work in these movies that I really like. And there's just enough grindhouse in the sensibility to make it appealing.

Flunks the Bechdel, sadly. The only female characters (and there aren't many) don't talk and aren't treated real well in general, so that's kind of sad. I like the way Carolina is represented, like I said, and the movie is pretty focused, so an extra character might have seemed extraneous. But who knows.

My grade: A-
Rewatch value: High

Next up: Despicable Me

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January 2013

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