With the resolution of Johnny Depp’s libel trial against The Sun’s reference to him as a “wife beater” not being in his favor, public opinion might begin swinging back towards Amber Heard, with people now feeling vindicated in watching her movies again. On that note, ludicrous actioner Machete Kills, featuring one of her less frequently referenced roles, has just hit Netflix for your viewing pleasure.
Machete Kills is the sequel to Machete, which sees Danny Trejo return as the eponymous bounty hunter and former Federale. After a madman threatens to fire a nuclear missile at Washington D.C. to force the US government to take action against Mexican drug cartels, Machete is sent to stop him, which kicks off a truly demented tale involving multiple double crosses, corrupt law enforcement, a brothel madam with a minigun bra, an army of prostitute assassins, a reincarnating martial artist henchman and a shapeshifting hitman. True to its inspirational roots of ‘70s grindhouse trash, it’s exactly as preposterous as that sounds, and also cranks up Machete’s badassery to superhuman indestructibility.
Heard comes into it as one of multiple beautiful women to populate the movie, and is also one of the few white actors to play a significant role, which is even referenced in her character’s name of Blanca. She’s introduced early on as Machete’s handler on his mission, an agent who works undercover in beauty pageants, and whose initial purpose is to be excessively blonde and seductive. There’s more to her character that’s revealed as the story progresses, but that unfortunately veers into spoiler territory.
And even if you’re still a bit uneasy about Amber Heard after the whole sorry mess of everything dredged up in the courts between her and Johnny Depp, the actress is absent from enough of the plot that you can still enjoy the farcical histrionics that the film has to offer.