|“||Trained to kill. Left for dead. Back for more.||”|
— Film's tagline.
Machete Kills is a 2013 American action-comedy film written and directed by Robert Rodriguez. It's a sequel to Machete and the third film based on Grindhouse fake trailers. Danny Trejo, Michelle Rodriguez, Tom Savini, Billy Blair, Electra and Elise Avellan, Felix Sabates and Jessica Alba reprise their roles from the first film, as well as being joined by series newcomers Mel Gibson, Demián Bichir, Amber Heard, Sofía Vergara, Lady Gaga, Antonio Banderas, Cuba Gooding Jr., Vanessa Hudgens, Alexa Vega, William Sadler, Marko Zaror and Charlie Sheen (credited by his real name of "Carlos Estévez"). The film follows the titular ex-federale (Trejo) as he is recruited by the U.S. President (Sheen) to stop an arms dealer (Gibson) and a revolutionary (Bichir).
The film starts with Machete Cortez (Danny Trejo) and Sartana Rivera (Jessica Alba) attempting to capture weapon dealers who have been supplying the Mexican drug cartels. The military men are then all killed by the gangsters, who in turn are wiped out by another intervening party. Its leader murders Sartana while Machete is arrested by a corrupt Sheriff Doakes (William Sadler) and Deputy Clebourne (Samuel Davis). Doakes tries to unsuccessfully hang Machete but the President of the US, Rathcock (Charlie Sheen), intervenes. Machete is brought to the White House, where the president offers him US citizenship if he eliminates Marcos Mendez (Demián Bichir), a psychopath who is threatening to fire a nuclear missile at Washington, D.C. if the American government does not intervene to stop the rampant drug cartels in Mexico and the corruption of its government.
Machete agrees and travels to San Antonio, where he meets his handler Blanca Vasquez (Amber Heard), an undercover beauty pageant competitor. She sends him to Acapulco to meet a young woman, Cereza (Vanessa Hudgens), who can lead him to Mendez. Machete finds her in a brothel run by her mother, Madame Desdemona (Sofía Vergara), who attempts to kill Machete before he escapes with Cereza. She takes him to Mendez's associate, Zaror (Marko Zaror), who kills Cereza before taking Machete to Mendez's base of operations.
There, Machete learns that Mendez has wired the missile's launch device to his heart and triggered its launch in 24 hours. If he dies, the missile fires. After killing Zaror he captures Mendez, intending to escort him to US and find a way to disarm the missile. Machete learns that Mendez is an ex-secret agent who tried to expose his corrupt superiors, only to be betrayed and forced to watch his family being tortured. The trauma drove him insane by creating his split personalities, as well as led him to join forces with the missile's creator.
Shortly thereafter, a hit is put on their heads. Machete is targeted by Madame Desdemona and her prostitute assassins, including a shapeshifting hitman called El Camaleón (Lady Gaga), as well as Doakes. Machete and Mendez manage to reach the US and kill Doakes and Clebourne only to be caught by a reborn Zaror and the same mercenaries who killed Sartana. Zaror decapitates Mendez and Machete is riddled with bullets by the gunmen.
Machete wakes up to find himself in a healing tank. He is taken to meet Zaror's benefactor—corrupt businessman, inventor and Star Wars fan Luther Voz (Mel Gibson). He shows Machete Mendez's beating heart, preserved in a jar, as well as informs him of his plan to manipulate extremists throughout the world to detonate nuclear weapons while planning to escape in a spaceship to rebuild society in space. Machete then escapes with help from Luz (Michelle Rodriguez), who had heard about the hit on Machete. She informs him that the only one who can disarm Mendez's heart is Machete's old enemy, Osiris Amanpour (Tom Savini). Machete contacts Vasquez, who instructs him to meet her at a rendezvous point.
Arriving there, Machete is betrayed and ambushed by Vasquez, who is in league with Voz. As she is escaping into the desert, Machete gives chase and jumps onto the top of her vehicle but falls off after gunfire comes through the roof. Machete is then given a ride by El Camaleón, who tries to kill him one last time. But he escapes and El Camaleón ends up being shot to death by a group of racist rednecks just inside the US border. Machete then reunites with Luz and her group, the Network. They infiltrate a fundraiser at Voz's base of operations. Machete realizes Voz was the one who killed Sartana and fights him. He severely burns Voz's face, disfiguring him to the extent that Voz is forced to wear a metallic, silver mask. Meanwhile, Vasquez shoots Luz in her good eye, completely blinding her. Luz kills Vasquez in return but is captured by Voz, frozen in Carbonite and taken aboard his ship.
Machete jumps on the missile as it launches and disarms it in mid-air, while Voz boards the ship and departs with the Zaror clones, his supporters, as well as Luz. The disarmed missile then plunges into the Rio Grande and Machete is rescued by President Rathcock, who asks him to follow Voz into space and kill him. Machete agrees and uses a SpaceX rocket to depart to Voz's Station in Earth's orbit, where he is given a laser machete to start his mission.
In a post-credits scene, an outtake from the Luz and Blanca fight scene is included followed by a shot of President Rathcock in front of a space background inquisitively brandishing two of Voz's guns (the molecular disruptor and the same pistol used to kill Sartana) before firing wildly at an off-screen target.
- Danny Trejo as Machete Cortez
- Michelle Rodriguez as Luz / Shé
- Mel Gibson as Luther Voz
- Sofía Vergara as Madame Desdemona
- Amber Heard as Blanca Vasquez / Miss San Antonio
- Demián Bichir as Marcos Mendez
- Charlie Sheen (credited by his real name of "Carlos Estévez") as President Rathcock
- Walton Goggins as El Chameleón 1
- Cuba Gooding, Jr. as El Chameleón 2
- Lady Gaga as La Chameleón
- Antonio Banderas as El Chameleón 4
- Jessica Alba as Sartana Rivera
- Vanessa Hudgens as Cereza Desdemona
- Alexa Vega as KillJoy
- Marko Zaror as Zaror
- Tom Savini as Osiris Amanpour
- William Sadler as Sheriff Doakes
- Trained to kill. Left for dead. Back for more.
- This marks the first time Mel Gibson has ever played a villain .
- This is the first film of Charlie Sheen's career in which he is credited under his real name, Carlos Estevez. He is humorously given "introducing" billing.
- Robert Rodriguez's eleventh collaboration with Danny Trejo.
- During the fight between Danny Trejo and Mel Gibson, the "William Wallace" sword from "Braveheart" can be seen behind Gibson.
- Body Count: 101.
- The penis-shaped gun used by 'Sofia Vergara' is virtually the same as the one used by Tom Savini used in From Dusk Till Dawn (1996), and Antonio Banderas in Desperado, both directed by Robert Rodriguez.
- The word Chingon across the back window of the armored Chevy El Camino they drive under the border is not only vulgar Mexican slang for something or someone very tough and cool, but it's the name of Robert Rodriguez' rock band. Music from Chingon has appeared in many of Rodriguez' films, including both Machetes.
- Shot in 29 days.
- Alexa PenaVega only has one line throughout the film.
- Michelle Williams was offered the role of Miss San Antonio, but declined. The role went to Amber Heard.
- When Voz puts on the "Iron" mask, it is clearly just a part that will cover the face. (He's putting it on towards his face.) But in the next second it appears to be more like a helmet that completely covers the whole head which would have been impossible to be put on the way he did before.
- Machete Kills at Wikipedia.
- Machete Kills atthe IMDb.
- Machete Kills atthe IMCDb.
- Machete Kills atthe IMFDb.