Elizabeth Avellan

Elizabeth Avellan

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Machete Review


Very Good
Essentially part three of the Grindhouse series, this old-style thriller sprang from Rodriguez's fake trailer. In some ways it should have stayed that short, because while it's riotously entertaining, there's nothing much to it.

Machete (Trejo) is a disgraced Mexican Federale who's hiding amongst the illegal immigrants on the Texas-Mexico border. Here he stumbles into a conspiracy involving a trigger-happy senator (DeNiro) and a wild-eyed vigilante (Johnson) who are cleaning up the border one bullet at a time. But he also runs up against a sexy immigration officer (Alba), a ruthless businessman (Fahey) and a trail of criminality leading to his nemesis Torrez (Seagal). As things get nasty, he gets help from his priest brother (Marin) and a feisty taco-truck lady (Rodriguez).

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Grindhouse Review


Excellent
Longtime buddies Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez have worked together before (Four Rooms, Sin City), but this takes it to the next level. Grindhouse is their shared B-movie fantasy: a three-hour, bare-knuckled double feature epic, an unapologetic celebration of '70s-era hardcore schlock that's authentic, witty beyond expectation, and unerringly crowd-pleasing.

In a recent TV interview, Tarantino said he and Rodriguez had always wished those low-budget flicks were as good as their posters -- and they set out to achieve that, decades after the movies' heyday. With an obvious passion for the genre, the pair has recreated the experience of being at some cheap Texas drive-in with two features, fake coming attractions, missing reels, local ads, and announcements from theater management. Even if you don't catch on to everything, just watching the package is a complete thrill.

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Spy Kids Review


Excellent
There are few respectable filmmakers in the world that would take on the difficult challenge of creating a children's movie. I don't mean those hack directors who just sit behind the camera and yell "action" and "print," but those few who take on the challenge of writing, directing, producing, and even editing a successful film for the underage masses. Creating a fantasy world with non-abrasive violence, imaginative sets and props, and engaging characters to follow is a tough process. With Spy Kids, Robert Rodriguez proves that his handling of adult fare extends to kids' stuff, too.

My favorite films are from my childhood -- Flash Gordon, Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory, Mary Poppins, the Muppets movies, Pee-Wee's Big Adventure, and The Never-Ending Story -- and they all presented an impossible world made real only by the power of imagination. Spy Kids ranks up there with the best children's films by creating implausible scenarios made from martial arts stunts, gee-whiz spy gadgets, robots built entirely of huge thumbs, a holodeck-like room filled with rolling clouds and stretches of golden sands, and providing total escapism for both kids and adults.

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Sin City Review


Excellent
You typically have to maintain low expectations for a comic book movie. For every Spider-Man, you get a bunch of Elektras and Daredevils. So really, what can you expect from one with a huge, B-list cast and three directors?

Surprise! Sin City is a mega-violent, highly potent vial of noir crack. And judging from the riotous burst of applause at the end of our screening, one that's destined to be a Matrix-style mass-cult classic.

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The Faculty Review


Very Good
Finally. We always knew Robert Rodriguez had talent as a filmmaker. We were just waiting for someone to put a good script in his hands, and Kevin Williamson has done that here. Do not be fooled by the woefully bad trailers, or by the fact that critics have roundly panned this horror film. The Faculty is easily the best of the genre to come along since Williamson's breakout hit, Scream. It is also the first watchable film Rodriguez has put up since storming onto the scene with El Mariachi.

Easily the biggest problem with this movie is in the marketing. I can only imagine how pissed off Williamson, Rodriguez, and everyone else involved in the movie must have been to see the film marketed as just another schlocky entry into the horror genre, which generally takes the words aliens; teenagers; battle; suspicious; killer; small town; etc. and jumble them up to come up with a concept (to wit, this time: suspicious small town teenagers battle killer aliens). Now if you are already a big 80s horror fan, just skip this review, because you already saw the movie, but this review is for people who are highly suspicious of shelling out eight bucks to see a horror flick. The only reason I actually saw The Faculty was because my little sister begged me to. But now I'm trying to convince you to.

Continue reading: The Faculty Review

Elizabeth Avellan

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Elizabeth Avellan Movies

Machete Movie Review

Machete Movie Review

Essentially part three of the Grindhouse series, this old-style thriller sprang from Rodriguez's fake trailer....

Grindhouse Movie Review

Grindhouse Movie Review

Longtime buddies Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez have worked together before (Four Rooms, Sin City),...

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Spy Kids Movie Review

Spy Kids Movie Review

There are few respectable filmmakers in the world that would take on the difficult challenge...

Sin City Movie Review

Sin City Movie Review

You typically have to maintain low expectations for a comic book movie. For every Spider-Man,...

The Faculty Movie Review

The Faculty Movie Review

Finally. We always knew Robert Rodriguez had talent as a filmmaker. We were...

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