Lohan gives a ‘1-2 punch’ in new Rodriguez picture.
In its opening weekend, “Machete” finished second to “The American”
despite a cast filled with A-list names. Originally predicted to premier in the top
spot and gain audiences attention there has been a steady drop in sales
following of trend of unsatisfied viewers and a lack of repeat ticket sales.
“Machete” fails to capture the charm of 70’s era exploitation cinema that it
shamelessly apes; instead the film is merely an unsuccessful recreation that
uses certain formal and narrative elements of the genre. Loud engines, outlaws,
and loose women along with gratuitous violence and sex are key markers that
have been used quite successfully in Rodriguez’s previous films, such as “Planet
Terror” and “From Dusk Till Dawn”. In this most recent production, The directorial
team of Rodriguez and Ethan Maniquis (“Planet Terror”) attempts to create a film
reminiscent of a time when underdeveloped scripts, shoestring budgets, amateur
actors and no regard for formal aesthetics came second to the visceral
experience of late night drive-in movie culture. Exploitation Cinema was truly an
original form while “Machete” is at best a poorly crafted memento. Everything
from the locations, set and sound design are too polished. As far as casting, their
performances are not over the top insomuch as their talents are under utilized.
Linday Lohan, however, is a saving grace for a film that overall feels
lacking and contrived. Playing the carefully crafted character of April, the
daughter of corrupt right wing senator Mclaughlin (De Niro), Lohan gives a
nuanced performance that mirrors her personal history, specifically focusing on
her most recent tabloid debauches. This seeming effortless tour de force shouts
a reaffirming cheer in the vain of Lindsanity. For those shocked that Lindsay is
not dead we can hope that this will be the final nail her career-coffin.