'EL GRINGO': Four Stars (Out of Five)
Eduardo Rodriquez directed this Scott Adkins action vehicle for After Dark Films (as part of their expansion into the action genre). It was written by Jonathan Stokes and produced by action master Joel Silver! It costars Yvette Yates, Erando Gonzalez and Christian Slater. The film is a great throwback to spaghetti westerns and other old school action films and continues to showcase the remarkable talents of Scott Adkins as a new leading man action hero.
Adkins plays a DEA agent (who is never named, in true spaghetti western fashion) who is setup and attacked in the middle of the dessert. His partners are killed but he manages to escape (after killing the gunmen who attacked him). He stages his own death and flees into Mexico with a bag full of drug money. He runs into hostility there wherever he goes as the locals don't seem to want him in their town. He finds a little help from a local bar owner (Yates) but soon finds a ton of opposition from the local corrupt sheriff (Gonzalez), and his drug cartel thugs, as well as his old DEA boss (Slater), who tracks him down.
The movie is a pretty impressive style over substance indie action film. Rodriguez's directing is cool and the script is fun. There's of course not a lot to the story but the action is almost nonstop and Adkins really shines as an action force to be reckoned with. It's nice to see someone other than Jason Statham still consistently making cool B action films. The movie was made for just $7 million but it's definitely not short on explosions or gun battles. This is the stuff that the action films of yesteryear were made of; just good old action loving fun!
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