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Machete Kills (Blu-ray Review)

Universal’s Machete Kills represents everything that’s wrong with Hollywood, sexploitation, extreme gore, bad dialogue, ridiculous plot and action sequences…you name it.  But why do I love it so much?!  Because it’s so much God d@mn fun if you let it be!  That’s why!  If you can’t let go and have a fun time with a Machete flick, then you’re a corpse!  Loosen up.  Let go of everything that makes sense in life.  It’s perfectly acceptable to rip someone’s intestines out, jump out the window with them in tow and swing from them to the below building floor.  Totally realistic!  Right?  Wrong!  But who the hell cares?!  This is Machete and this is the Austin’s prodigal son, Señor Robert Rodriguez writing and directing these flicks.  If you can’t respect that harmonious blend, then I have no reason to deal with you anymore.  Move along.  I’m sure there’s a Muppets review or two here on the site for you to look at.  However, for everyone that’s serious in having a “grindhouse” of a good time, stick around…this one’s going to be fun, nonsensical and everything irrational as we discuss the second film in the “hopeful” planned trilogy, Machete Kills.  Hold onto you innards, here we go!

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Film 

Machete Kills is now the third film based on the Grindhouse fake trailers, with the first being Machete and Hobo With A Shotgun (absolutely horrible in my humble opinion).  Danny Trejo, Jessica Alba, Tom Savini and Michelle Rodriguez will all be reprising their roles from the first film.  Sofia Vergara, Lady Gaga, Amber Heard, Antonio Banderas, Zoe Saldana, Vanessa Hudgens, Cuba Gooding Jr., Alexa Vega, Demian Bichir, Mel Gibson, Charlie Sheen and more are newcomers this time out.  Holy crap!  Did you see that lineup I just typed?!  Talk about an all-star studded cast!  How can you not at least have some guilty pleasure fun with this one?  Just look at that fun movie poster below!  Sadly, the only one missing this time out is Lindsay Lohan.  Ten bucks says he gets Brittany Spears in the next one.  Any takers?

Let’s skip the foreplay and any backstory there may be in assumption that you’ve already seen the first film.  If not, then I’m afraid you have some required homework to do.  Now, moving on…in Machete Kills after a brief preview of the next Machete film (you heard me right) and an action sequence with Sartana (Alba), the US President, Rathcock (Sheen), recruits Machete (Trejo) to stop a revolutionary madman, Mendez (Bichir), from launching a deadly missile aimed at Washington, DC.  Machete is assigned to “work” with the gorgeous Miss San Antonio (Amber Heard), who gives him his own iPhone (who says Machete doesn’t text?), and also gets hunted down by a brothel of prostitutes headed by Madame Desdemona (Vergara) and a chameleon known as El Cameleon (I’ll avoid the name here as to not spoil things) as he uncovers a potentially bigger problem, an eccentric billionaire arms dealer, Luther Voz (Gibson).  You see, Voz is hellbent on starting riots in every country as he claims to know what’s going to happen in this world because he’s always two steps ahead of everyone else and he even has his own space rocket to prove it (that’s all I’m saying).

So yeah…Machete kills in this one…again!  LOL.  What more can I say?  The movie’s title will not mislead you at all.  You’re not going to this one in hopes of seeing an Academy Award winning performance or two (especially the critics of Michelle Rodriguez).  No such thing is going to happen here and if it does strike me down with lightning right now.  No!  You’re going to this one to A) support Robert Rodriguez, B) have a good time and C) just let go of all seriousness in your bones.  If you can’t at least do those latter two, you should NOT be reading about the Blu-ray review of Machete Kills.  This is NOT the film for you.  For all others, you know what you’re getting yourself into.  If you want nothing more than to see hot, sexy bombshells going absolutely crazy and losing all control on the big screen, heads cut off effortlessly, bad special effect after another and a guy who seemingly can’t be killed even when he’s shot point blank by an army of men, you DESERVE to be here and you SHOULD be here.  This IS the film for you!  Let go, have fun and just go on the wild and crazy ride with Machete as he travels the countryside to stop a man even madder than himself.  Why is he mad?  Well, I guess you’ll just have to find out for yourself.  The one thing I do know though is Machete is a Mexican you never want to cross.  No matter what the terms are, you always want the guy on your side because no matter how ugly or repulsive you find him, he’s always going to get the girl (even your chick) and he’s always going to win.  If you can accept that, once again, this IS the film for you!

What can I say?  I’m a sucker for these films!  I’m a devoted disciple of Robert Rodriguez and his work.  He can do no wrong in my opinion (and that’s why I have not seen a single Spy Kids film in my life…LOL).  Sure it’s asinine and non-sensical and hopefully my film score reflects that somewhat (although a 3 is pretty good), but what it’s also is a great time to be had if you can let go.  It makes me laugh.  I love the raunchiness of it.  Can you tell I’m not a parent?  Maybe that’s why.  But this is one of those films and genre that’s really the case where YRMV.  Oh, okay!  That means Your Results May Vary.  I can’t stress that enough!  If you don’t like the idea of seeing not a single bullet hit your main character when ten people are firing at him with automatic weapons from ten feet away or a strap on bra that rapid fires, then maybe try your luck with the crowd pleaser Gravity.  Now that’s not to say I did not have issues with this one either, because I did.  I honestly feel like they crammed so many stars into this one they were all cheated of adequate screen time.  For example, I’m a huge Lady Gaga fan.  I was looking forward to seeing what she was capable of here and I don’t feel I got the price of admission (even though I didn’t pay) for what I was looking for.  Same thing goes for Cuba, Jessica and the rest of the folks with whom I was looking forward to having such a great time with.  The story feels like a disjointed Austin Powers adventure you’ve seen already, but what the hell?!  This is the Mexican version!

The one thing I can’t do is I can’t say enough good things about this cast though.  Despite the brevity of screen time they all had, everyone seemed like they were there for Rodriguez (especially Sofia), showed up and had a great time with doing so.  In other words there were no Bruce Willis (A Good Day to Die Hard) moments.  LOL.  I am extremely happy to be adding this to my ever growing Blu-ray collection and if you can wait for it to go on sale soon, I urge you as Robert Rodriguez fans to do so too.

P.S.  I love all the Star Wars references, gadgets and gags, Rodriguez.  You already had me at hello, but the inclusion of these were priceless, IMO.  And now…the technical aspects of this Blu-ray presentation.  Here we go!

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Video 

Here’s a question for you.  How can Machete Kills not look good in the video department?  I mean with as much eye candy as Rodriguez throws at you it’s possible to overlook a problem or two in the video department, is it not?  I think it is!  You’re always going to have that intentionally tweaked, hot contrast, film scratches and whatnot courtesy of Rodriguez, but it’s the deep inky black levels, the illustrious flesh tones and the fine level of detail in Danny Trejo’s acne scars in this 1080p MPEG-4 AVC encode that you’re going to be raving about.  A thin, veneer layer of grain is present throughout, but it’s the sun drenched landscapes of the South that will bring your mind back to pleasurable memories of the first installment, not to mention all the belles perfectly framed in a 1.85:1 aspect ratio that will fill your HDTV screen with nothing but Southern delight and of course…a lot of silliness too.  I think you know what to expect here, so let’s move on to the audio section.

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Audio 

I’m in love with this one!  What a nice way to top off such a crazy and zany action flick with an over-the-top, bombastic aggressive English DTS-HD MA 5.1 surround track!  It’s like music to my ears.  You picking up what I’m dropping?  The lively surround track engulfs you in the middle of the action even in times of lull.  And of course it really kicks you in the nuts during the battle scenes thanks to the aggressiveness of the LFE channel and accompanying rears.  What I like in addition to the fun factor here is the dimensionality of the track.  Who doesn’t love to hear bullets zinging by them or explosions eschewing things around the room?  I know this guy does!  In addition to the native language track we’re discussing here, there’s also selectable options for English SDH, French and Spanish subtitles.

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Extras 

This is really the only aspect of this Universal Blu-ray release that I’m disappointed with, the lack of extras.  Where are they all?  Come on!  You mean to tell me there are no 2-hour Amber Heard documentaries to be found anywhere in this Blu-ray package?  Boo!  So in addition to film presented in Standard Definition on a DVD disc and the Digital HD redemption code, which is good for both UltraViolet and iTunes (thank you for the latter), we are left with only two lonely featurettes here.  So let’s stop wasting time and talk about them in some more detail.  If you want my opinion, I’m just happy to have the Digital HD versions of the film included!

  • Making Machete Kills (HD, 20:10) – I have to admit.  I’m a big fan of this.  What other way are you going to know what it’s like to be behind the scenes during the filming of Machete Kills with all the big name stars, Rodriguez and crew?  Thanks to all the behind-the-scenes-footage and interviews here, you’ll know!  I especially like the Austin, TX love and the focus on Danny Trejo!
  • Deleted and Extended Scenes (HD, 20:20) – Haha.  Our reviewer Gerard Iribe texted me a baby clone version of Machete last week and guess what?!  It can be seen in here!  So what’s in store for you here?  Well, I’m kind of glad you asked because I want to chat about it in detail.  Here you will find a total of 8 deleted and extended scenes that fortunately show a little more Gaga!  Yea!  However, don’t get your hopes up for this one either.  Most of this footage is already in the final film product.  There’s not too much to be seen here other than the baby Machete.  LOL.

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Summary 

While Machete Kills may not be as majestic (and that’s a big word to be throwing around in a Machete movie review) and shocking as its predecessor, there’s no denying the many titillating moments it does offer.  Do yourself a favor.  If you choose to go on this Blu-ray journey, come into it with very low expectations.  I have read too many reviews of this film where people bash it and say how awful it was compared to how they thought it would be.  Really?  Did you not see the first film?  Did you not know what you were signing yourself up for?  That’s like saying I thought Wolf of Wall Street was going to be more like The Great Gatsby.  And believe it or not, I have heard several people say that and I just can’t understand why.  Oh well, let bygones be bygones for crying out loud.  If you like young, hot lasses, then you should not be disappointed here.  I mean look at some of them in the images above!  Hell…look at this one below.

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And if you want to have even more fun, check out one of my favorite videos below that Lady Gaga and Robert Rodriguez collaborated together on where he cut a homage to Machete Kills from her “Aura” track.  I just love it!

In fact, as long as you are onboard with the flick itself, I think the only place you’ll find this Blu-ray package lacking is in the Special Features department.  But who needs them when you have the babes in the film to enjoy in glorious, mouth-drooling 1080p, right?  Exactly!  So what are you waiting for?  Help support our site by clicking here to bring Machete Kills home on Blu-ray today!

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Owner/Writer/Reviewer/Editor, Dreamer, Producer, Agent of Love, Film Lover, Writer of Screenplays and a Devoted Apostle to all things Ford Mustangs (the real ones with V8's!). Some of my favorite films include FIGHT CLUB, MOULIN ROUGE, THE DARK KNIGHT, STAR WARS alongside television shows such as SEINFELD, 24, SANFORD & SON and even the often loathed in the geek community BIG BANG THEORY. Outside of my three lives I live I also enjoy spending time with my girlfriend and our three girls (of the furry kind).

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