Movie of the Week: “Desperado”

Written, directed, and produced by Robert Rodriguez, Desperado is the sequel to the highly successful indie classic “El Mariachi.” Starring Antonio Banderas as the mariachi, it continues his story of revenge after getting shot in the hand and losing the love of his life. Part of Rodriguez’s “Mexico Trilogy”, it is a non-stop ride of action and bullets. While not the most sophisticated movie to come out in theaters, its styled violence and cool set pieces will likely entertain any movie night. Warning: possible spoilers ahead.

The movie begins at a Tarasco bar in Mexico. A man named Buscemi (Steve Buscemi) enters the bar with an aggrandized tale of a man with a suitcase full of weapons that killed everyone at a separate bar looking for a drug lord named Bucho. Buscemi then leaves to meet the mariachi and tells him the people at the bar he told the story to know who Bucho is. The mariachi then goes to the Tarasco bar and a shoot out ensues once he tells them he is looking for Bucho. After killing everyone at the bar except for one man in the back room, the mariachi leaves and begins walking down the street. The one man in the back room begins stalking the mariachi as he makes his way down the street. At the same time, a beautiful girl named Carolina is walking in the same direction. As the back room man begins to shoot, the mariachi protects Carolina from the shots and kills the assailant. The mariachi and Carolina then begin a romantic relationship. Determined for history not to repeat itself, the mariachi continues to embark on his revenge quest to kill the drug dealer Bucho.

While the movie is filled to the brim with blood and bullets, it is not without its lighter moments. The film is constantly trying to create humor out of tense situations and never takes itself too seriously. While there are side characters who are strictly there for laughs such as Steve Buscemi and Quentin Tarantino, there are characters that mean pure bloody business like the knife wielding assassin played by Danny Trejo. The movie also has a guitar case that shoots missiles. Must I say more?

“Desperado” is one those old school action movies that doesn’t take too much thinking to watch. It has tense, sad, and funny moments that seamlessly blend together. Though not as authentic or realistic as its predecessor, the movie contains a different kind of charm that its previous installment didn’t. All in all, “Desperado” is type of movie action and romance fans will love.

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