Oscar-winner Steven Soderbergh delivers this ambitious and sprawling biopic of one of the 20th century’s most influential political figures. In the first 137-minute segment, The Argentine, we meet Ernesto “Che” Guevara (Benicio Del Toro), a young Argentinean doctor who teams up with Fidel Castro on a dangerous mission: to overthrow the corrupt Cuban dictatorship run by Fulgencio Batista. Che’s commitment to the cause impresses everyone around him, and soon he is one of the leaders of this burgeoning guerrilla movement. Against all odds, Castro, Che, and their undermanned forces charge forward, conquering Batista’s forces on their way to an expected showdown with the man himself. Soderbergh films this first segment–a battle that everyone knows Che is going to win–with beautiful widescreen photography, like a Hollywood epic from yesteryear. Composer Alberto Iglesias accompanies this imagery with a sweeping orchestral score. Soderbergh intercuts the primary story of the revolution with Che’s 1964 appearance at the United Nations in New York City, recreating that event in documentary-like black-and-white. However, as impressive as these technical attributes are, it is Del Toro who steals the show. He inhabits Che in a way that feels like he isn’t just acting. The Argentine is an inspiring tale of a man whose fierce determination and unflinching spirit turned him into a hero to disadvantaged people throughout the world.
Special Presentation in conjunction with Che 2 (Oct 15: 7pm) — $8 for a single film, $12 for both — 6-packs do not apply.