Machete Movie Review: A Commentary on US Immigration Law or a Stupid B Movie?

by admin on September 9, 2010

Robert Rodriguez’s new B movie with and A-movie cast ‘Machete’ is over the top and cartoon-ish in its portrayal of violence and its political commentary.  Much in the style of “Grindhouse”  the movie provides an absurd escapist fantasy.  The film features a Mexican avenger fighting in behalf of immigrant right against a right wing alliance consisting of anti-immigration politicians and Mexican drug lords.   I do not think that most intelligent, emotionally stable people viewing this movie would consider the theme as a call to arms for immigrant rights or any other political platform.

Nevertheless, the violence and attitude portrayed din Machete have been criticized as encouraging violence, race war and other unpleasant actions.  in the real world,  it often doesn’t take much to push predisposed people over the top.  It could one cross look, a rough day at the office or another day of monotony.  Having lived on the Texas border and having spent a lot of time in Ciudad Juarez and in other parts of Mexico, the violence there is no joke.  Like America the macho man paradigm runs deep.  Furthermore, there are certainly people who can take the movie the wrong way and use it as fodder to feed already violent and anti-social tendencies.

The connection between right wing anti immigration politicos and Mexican drug dealers is based on a plan to rope off the border with a fence that would allow those with power to use the fence to transport their own contraband.  So, drug dealing would be facilitated by those drug dealers who controlled the fence (and who had the right wing immigration lobby in their pocket).

As far fetched as this plot is, there are some parallels to truth here.  I would venture that there is a significant correlation between Anti-immigration sentiment and pro-drug war beliefs.  Both would be conservative voters.  In reality the Mexican drug lords do owe their wealth to the draconian US drug laws, which creates a premium price for their product.  Therefore, Rodqiguez is correct that it is in organized crimes interests to keep drugs illegal (Just like AL Capone and Bugsey Segal made out during the Prohibition era).   Also an anti-immigration elected official is likely to be pro drug war.

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