Desperado (1995) / Action-Thriller

MPAA Rated: R for strong bloody violence, a strong sex sequence, and language
Running Time: 104 min.

Cast: Antonio Banderas, Salma Hayek, Joaquim de Almeida, Cheech Marin, Steve Buscemi
Small role: Quentin Tarantino, Danny Trejo, Enrique Iglesias

Director: Robert Rodriguez

Screenplay: Robert Rodriguez
Review published January 13, 1997

Desperado 1995 Antonio BanderasThe musician who was mistaken for a hitman in El Mariachi is back, this time as a hitman mistaken for a musician (Banderas, The Mask of Zorro). Avenging the murder of his girlfriend and the ruthless maiming of his guitar playing hand, he seeks revenge on Bucho (de Almeida, Clear and Present Danger), the man responsible for the incident.

Director Robert Rodriguez (The Faculty, Once Upon a Time in Mexico) impresses with his Peckinpah-ish style once again in this sequel (which is almost a remake) of El Mariachi. Desperado does lack some of the freshness of its predecessor, but still has a lot of style on its own.

Banderas turns in a good macho performance and Salma Hayek (Dogma, 54) is impressive in her breakthrough role as his love interest.

The downside of the film is the lack of a compelling plot and the excessive time spent with Rodriguez trying to send the action WAAYY over the top. As a matter of fact, you probably could have excised about 90 minutes of scenes that neither push the plot along nor add to character development (of which there is almost none.)

Superficial stuff, but still quite fun to watch.

-- Follows El Mariachi.  Followed by Once Upon a Time in the West.

Qwipster's rating: 

©1997 Vince Leo