Sunday, January 18, 2009

Che: Part One

The other night I went to see part one of Steven Soderbergh's Che. The film was extraordinary to say the least. Very powerful and very well thought out. I really felt as though Che had come to life on the screen and we were seeing his every movement and that I was able to understand his every thought and decision. The film gives a lot of insight into the behind the scenes work that he did throughout the revolution and makes you really think about the love and the passion that these men had for their country and their cause.

The characters are all well developed, even the ones you meet briefly. Soderbergh does an excellent job of making each character as real as possible and although some are doing terrible things to other people, you see and know the cause that they are fighting for. There is a lot of historical significance and even though I have not read his diary which the film is based on, I have heard that it stays very true to what actually happened.

One of the highlights of the film was the acting. Benicio del Toro is as the reviewers are saying, "flawless." His portrayal is great and very believable. He does not slip up once the entire film which is remarkable considering he is in almost every scene. He is great to watch because he really captures the screen and the essence of the moment. I hope that he is at least nominated for an Oscar this year. The supporting actors in the film were great as well. The actor who played Fidel is especially notable as was the actor who played Alejandro Ramirez. Another great aspect of the film was the cinematography. They really used the background and the landscape to bring the movie to life and used the harsh and unforgiving jungles to their advantage. It makes for a beautiful film and the vivid colors really pop out making it very exciting. I also enjoyed the fact that almost the entire film is in spanish, except for the parts where there are english speaking characters. It added a deep level of authenticity thus making it not seem so hollywood even though it may look it at points. One of the best parts of the film however is the brief moments of humor including a conversation with Senator McCarthy among other very funny moments. There are also a lot of great and powerful quotes from Che that are very cool and suave. My only major complaint was the music. Sometimes it was very good and had a latin theme to it, but other times it just felt like a very American score which was disappointing.

Over all the film is fantastic, a definite must see of this season. I highly recommend it to anyone. I give it 4/5 stars and a promise that I will see part two in theaters before it goes to DVD.

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