Former musician and gunslinger El Mariachi arrives at a small Mexican border town after being away for a long time. His past quickly catches up with him and he soon gets entangled with the local drug kingpin Bucho and his gang.
Director Robert Rodriguez picks up where his successful independent debut El Mariachi left off with this slam-bang South of the Border action saga. Bucho (Joaquim DeAlmeida) is a wealthy but casually bloodthirsty drug kingpin who rules a seedy Mexican border town. Bucho and his men make the mistake of angering El Mariachi (Antonio Banderas), a former musician who now carries an arsenal in his guitar case. Bucho was responsible for the death of El Mariachi's girlfriend and put a bullet through his fretting hand, making him unable to play the guitar. Bent on revenge, the musician-turned-killing machine arrives in town to put Bucho out of business, though he finds few allies except for Carolina (Salma Hayek), who runs a bookstore that doesn't seem to attract many readers. Desperado features supporting performances from Cheech Marin as a cynical bartender, Steve Buscemi as the cantina patron who sets up the story, and Quentin Tarantino as a man with a really terrible joke to tell.
Due to the film's relatively low budget, the same two stunt men were used throughout the movie. See more »
During the street firefight near the end of the film, When Campa drops down, and flips his guitar case onto his shoulder in preparation to fire a rocket from it, there is no opening or hole at all in the end of the case. The hole the rocket fires from does not appear until 2 shots later, after another shot of the approaching vehicle, then back to Campa. It is in this second shot of Campa that the hole appears and the rocket fires from it. See more »
[watching the bar shootout on a surveillance camera in a secret counting room]
Is that goin' on right now?
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Reportedly, Desperado suffered severe cuts when initially submitted for an R-rating. The end sequence originally involved a large scale shootout between El Mariachi, Carolina, Bucho & his thugs. After seeing the amount of footage that needed to be trimmed, the director opted to delete the entire scene which currently ends in a slow-mo of Banderas blasting away. 2 additional scenes were also removed featuring the "crotch-gun" (seen in the guitar case) used during 2nd bar shootout and the same gun going off accidentally when Banderas is in bed with Hayek. This gun was later used for a scene in From Dusk Till Dawn. See more »
Rodriguez follows up 'El Mariachi' with 'Desperado'. Many seem to have preferred the raw look that 'El Mariachi' had and while 'Desperado' is more 'sophisticated' in the making and more polished, that doesn't prevent it from being an awesome action entertainer. For me, it was just as much fun as 'El Mariachi'. Rodriguez does what he does best. He already mentioned that his Mariachi films are a tribute to the western cinema that names like Sergio Leone and Clint Eastwood defined and 'Desperado' works perfectly with its comic book story, quirky characters and over-the-top action sequences. Moving at a rapid pace, the direction and editing are top notch. The cinematography is brilliant too. Antonio Banderas does a good job taking over the role from Carlos Gallardo (who sort of plays his sidekick in this one). However, it is Salma Hayek that steals the show even though the story is dominated by El Mariachi. As Carolina, she is sensual, witty, charming and quite clever too. Hayek delivers a very natural performance and owns each and every one of her scenes. In addition, there are some wonderful cameos by Cheech Marin, Quentin Tarantino, Steve Buscemi and Danny Trejo. Overall, 'Desperado' is full throttle entertainment. This is what an action entertainer is supposed to be.
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