Get the Gringo (2012)

I have to start this review with something of an ‘open letter’. Based on what I ‘ve read and heard, I have to say this: “Fuck you, Mel Gibson. I think you’re an ignorant, misogynistic, homophobic asshole with some serious anti-Semitic issues, in amongst what is clearly an anger management problem, rooted in some sort of potential mental illness.” Having put that out there, I do have to acknowledge the flip side of the coin. Similar to The Curious Case of Tom Cruise, Gibson is undeniably an engrossing screen presence; on top of being a highly capable director. So, having said that, I now need to turn my attention to the dickheads latest attempt at something resembling a film career. This action-caper movie is the first (that I know of) Direct-to-Digital release in Gibsons filmography. Taking this flick on its own merits, while overlooking the piece of shit in the starring role, I do have to (readily) admit that this movie is a well-made, gritty action ‘throwback’, in the same vein as some of Gibsons best stuff. Actually, should you change the main characters name to Porter, this COULD be a sequel to the also cool Payback (1999). The plot revolves around Gibsons thief-on-the-run character as he finds himself locked away in a bizarre Mexican prison that also serves as a ramshackle community, following a high energy car chase and subsequent (and spectacular) crash through the border fence. While getting the lay-of-the-land, he partners up with a street-wise, chain-smoking 10 year old and his ‘tough as nails’ convict mom, while orchestrating plots and double-crosses with/against the upper echelon of the criminal element, in order to get out alive…and hopefully with his cash. This is pure old-school Mel Gibson and it nearly pains me to admit that this role had me fondly remembering some of his other iconic characters (Max, Riggs, Porter etc). Despite being shot in High Def Video (which normally bothers me), Get the Gringo manages to establish a Big Screen flavor, mostly through the appropriate use of quick cuts and tight shots, and maintains it throughout the running time. It’s awesomely violent too…with bullets flinging splashes of gore with every hit. And there’s grenades! Well-timed use of ‘slow-mo’ goes a long way to accent the action scenes here. Taking it down to brass tacks, I hate to admit it but I would actually recommend this flick to someone who can seperate the ‘asshole’ from the ‘art’, while being a fan of crassly unapologetic, violent action movies. Get the Gringo will fill that slot nicely.
PS: “Go to hell, Mel!”-Me

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