I'm talkin' 'bout Machete! He's the federale who's a sex machine to all the chicks, and no friend of the racist whitefolk out to mess with all the murderous, blade-flashing attitude for which he stands.
The character, played by the authentic tough guy and character actor Danny Trejo, was introduced in a fake trailer, part of the 2007 Robert Rodriguez/Quentin Tarantino double bill known as "Grindhouse." Now Rodriguez and Trejo have delivered the movie to go with the trailer. It's outlandishly gory and bluntly political, the latter being more interesting than the former. It wears out its welcome, though, long before la revolución, and sequels are promised.
"Machete" pits undocumented workers and their protectors against reactionary, bloodthirsty vigilantes and their sleazy political allies. Robert De Niro plays the Texas state senator running his campaign on a "roll back the illegals, electrify the border fence" platform. Michelle Rodriguez, the best thing going here, portrays the taco-truck owner who's running a secret network for her fellow border-crossers.
Don't get me wrong: Robert Rodriguez and co-director Ethan Maniquis (a longtime Rodriguez colleague) waste no time with sober discussion of U.S. immigration policy or a serious investigation into the matter of Jessica Alba and why she never seems to get any better as an actress. (She plays an immigrations officer trying to crack the underground network.)