Bring Me ... Machine Gun Woman

Wednesday, 16 October 2013 10:09

Bring Me The Head of the Machine Gun Woman on Blu-ray and DVD“Bring Me the Head of the Machine Gun Woman” (or MGM for brevity’s sake) is a loving homage to those 1970s grindhouse/exploitation flicks that Quentin Tarantino is so obsessed with. Made by Chilean director Ernesto Díaz Espinoza (“The ABCs of Death”), the movie stars Fernanda Urrejola as the titular, weapon-heavy lady and Matías Oviedo as Santiago, a kind of Chilean version of Chuck, a geeky DJ who gets into very hot water after overhearing some gangsters putting a hit out on someone.

Santiago is given an ultimatum by his unsavoury boss, the absurdly-named Che Sausage (Jorge Alis): kill the Machine Gun Woman within 24 hours or suffer the dire consequences. Fortunately the seemingly useless club employee is more resourceful and observant than he is given credit for, and manages to track the hit woman down. Thereafter the movie descends into a sequence of tense and bloody encounters with a variety of mercenaries keen to put an end to the Machine Gun Woman’s personal bounty hunt.

MVM’s makers clearly also idolise the Grand Theft Auto videogame series as the story’s chapters are framed by GTA-style onscreen mission titles and progress reports (cheekily using the same font), and the director even goes so far as to shoot driving sequences as you would see them in the game. The film also echoes other game styles such as briefly featuring some first-person, down-the-barrel gun battles.

For the most part, the film is a success. With the exception of Santiago, the characters are comic-book, cardboard cut-outs but they serve a purpose and more importantly the three leads give entertainingly colourful performances. Urrejola oozes sex appeal, though it would be difficult not to given the skimpy outfits her character lithely wiggles about in. Oviedo is charming as the affable geek who metaphorically grows a pair, and Alis is suavely despicable as the big, bad enemy.

The action sequences are generally not too ambitious but they hit the spot and feature some impressive blood-letting effects that look real (in an exaggerated way) rather than cheaply stuck on in post-production. The soundtrack is a catchy, funky mix of 1970s music.

A tongue-in-cheek, comedic tone runs throughout, with some wonderfully crude double entendres such as requesting ‘very deep oil changes’ from the camp manager of a garage, and the roster of bad guys include some bizarre quirks such as sniffing shoes, and letting rip whilst whirling around playing a large bass drum strapped to the back.

In my view the movie only makes one major mistake when a sex scene is thrust into the plot at an incredibly inopportune moment. Even given the exploitation theme, the sequence simply feels wrong and does not add anything of merit to the film. Other than that, though, I found it very enjoyable. Fans of “Desperado” and “El Mariachi” will be thrilled to bits!

Basic special features bundled with both versions include:

  • Behind the scenes clips
  • Trailer

The Blu-ray version is sharp and like the DVD edition features faux 1970s colour degradation and scratches to make it feel dated. On balance, the technique does succeed.

“Bring Me the Head of the Machine Gun Woman” (2012) is out now on DVD and Blu-ray, courtesy of Clear Vision. The main feature has a running time of 73 minutes approx, carries an ‘18’ certificate and retails for £12.99 on DVD and £14.99 on Blu-ray, or less from www.culttvstore.com

 

Last modified on Wednesday, 16 October 2013 10:14

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