El Mariachi

El MariachiA while ago we watched El Mariachi. This film is of course a must for any Robert Rodriguez fan. For those ho do not know it, it’s the debut movie of Robert Rodrigues and the predecessor to Desperado and Once Upon A Time In Mexico.

The film originally cost only 7 000$ to make. It was filmed on 16 millimeter film and originally intended for the Mexican market only but when Columbia Pictures got wind about it, they liked it so much that they bought the US rights for it. Columbia spent more than that on transferring it from 16 millimeter film to 35 millimeter one so that it could be distributed to US theaters.

Rodrigues had collected around 9 000$ to make the film and cut cost around every corner. Most of the actors are volunteers from the village where it was filmed for instance. The blood splatter comes from condoms filled with colored water. The guns where borrowed from the local police stations. Since it’s real guns they jammed after each shot when firing movie blanks.

The film holds very high ratings. 92% from the critics at Rotten Tomatoes for instance, but those so called “critics” are very often totally out of touch with the actual movie audience. The actual movie-goers have given it a more reasonable 59% and Internet Movie Database gives it a rating of 6.2 out of 10. Well, my own verdict is that he film is good but not as good as some people like to make it. It shows that it’s the work of an inexperienced, although talented, director on a very low budget. It get’s an okay rating in my Film Collection.

Desperado TrilogyPicture-wise it’s as expected. Grainy as hell with a very limited dynamic range. The original is 16 millimeter so what do you expect? It’s probably the only movie I have, especially on Blu-ray, that is not at least in Dolby Digital but plain stereo sound.

Anyway, as a Robert Rodriguez fan this movie is a must and I’m glad having watched it and having it in my collection.

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