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Movie Review: Che: Part Two

Prinz Lee image

Prinz Lee wrote this review 6 years and 5 months ago

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The epitome of all revolutionary films has been marked by this one. “Che”, is Steven Soderbergh’s latest product of high level

admiration, respect and neutral look into one of the world’s most interesting and forth-coming human beings of the 20th. Century… love it or hate it, I personally believe it was time to lay it out on the table and let the world know about that famous face we’ve all seen on T-shirts during the last 4 decades. A cause is a cause and it’s brought to you in two parts with CHE Part One (The Argentine) and CHE Part Two (Guerilla)

PART ONE (The Argentine)

“The Argentine" is expressed by Guevara's 1964 visit to the United Nations where he is interviewed about his life and politics by an English reporter played by Julia Ormond.The entire Cuban revolutionary war is formatted as a flashback as we witness the first meeting between Cuban exile Fidel Castro (Demián Bichir who oozes an uncanny resemblance) and Guevara nearly a decade earlier at a dinner at a mutual friend's apartment in Mexico City. Castro immediately takes a liking to the young Argentine idealist and doctor because he shares common ideas of overthrowing the corrupt dictatorship of Fulgencio Batista even if it means taking the most extreme measures. With 80 guerrillas Castro and Guevara returned to Cuba by sea only to be attacked by Batista's forces upon arrival leaving only 12 survivors. Though the film is based upon his life and exploits Guevara early on feels like a supporting player in his own story. This is an unusual risk for Soderbergh to present the material in such a fashion and though it must have put Del Toro's acting abilities to the test, the method actually succeeds. Why? Being a method actor entails diving into one’s character in ways of realism and he’s delve into it before with roles he’s gone all out for in “Traffic”, “The way of the gun” and “Fear and loathing in Las Vegas” among others… “Che” the art-form of living the character couldn’t be any clearer in the sense of knowing the level of his limits.

PART TWO (Guerrilla)

Guerrilla” is a bit more of a challenge to watch than "The Argentine" for various reasons. It's the darker of the two and the bleakest as we witness Ernesto Che Guevara's failed attempt to overthrow the Bolivian government.

Che's exploits in the Congo are barely mentioned as Peter Buchman's screenplay chooses to pick up in October of 1965 with Castro addressing Guevara.

public disappearance of several months by reading a letter written to him in which Che states his intention to leave Cuba to fight abroad for the cause of the revolution. Already married to fellow fighter Aleida (Catalina Sandino Moreno) with several children, Guevara sneaks back into Bolivia, by partially shaving his head to disguise himself as an old man to get through customs. A small army of guerrillas are patiently awaiting his arrival and although his participation in their cause is only a rumor, few know that the veteran soldier that has come to aid them is actually Che Guevara.

Though Guevara has Castro's blessing to liberate his homeland, he can not be publicly linked to the cause. The rebels in Bolivia are not as organized or trustworthy as those in Cuba and word soon spreads to the government of Guevara's involvement. Guevara had only hoped to deal with the country's military government, but with the Americans alerted to his presence, CIA operatives are dispatched to aid the anti-insurrection effort and prevent "another Cuba". The U.S. is frightened to lose another Latin American country to communism and U.S Army Special Forces are sent to organize an elite battalion of Rangers to be trained in jungle warfare.

Both films present the edgy-like flavors of a life that many may not consider the “norm” or completely “crazy”. A memorable line during the first film comes from “Castro” himself when referring to being a little crazy can be good and serve a purpose at times. I guess it remains to be seen how far this film will get within the hearts of the American movie-goer, especially one who’s of Cuban origin or back-ground, but truth be told lots of passionate films have been produced pertaining to other controversial figure heads and world events and have gained the utmost respect for it and glorified to it’s mightiest capacity and I truly feel this film should get that same opportunity.

Ernesto “Che” Guevara’s actions have been embraced by many around the world, yet distorted in many ways. Anyone truly into world events knows what I’m talking about. He stood for a cause, never killed for the act or art of it, never kidnapped for the purpose of ransom or political push and always stood firm going against thievery. Smeared with a lot of downfalls from those who “followed” his trail, the name induces lots of cringe and question. A murdering communist bastard or revolutionary hero… you make that call… however; one cannot strip away a man’s ambition to stand up for what he believes in.



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