Monday, June 15, 2020

Famous Gunmen.

When Lucio Peña (Mario Almada) gets word that his brother has been gunned down by bar goons; Lucio then grabs his father’s gun & fires away at his brother’s killers. Lucio now on the run from the law; meets up with his friend Zeferino (Fernando Almada) who just happens to be a hired gunmen for local mobsters. Lucio is then taken under Zeferino’s wing and goes along with the hits him & other gunmen El Coyote (Lorenzo de Monteclaro) & Generoso (Alvaro Zermeño) are hired to do. The quartet then become “famous” working together & often get hired by a big time mob boss (Roberto Cañedo) who just happens to be married to Lucio’s long lost love Mayra (Rossy Mendoza)

 When Pistoleros Famosos (aka "Famous Gunmen") was first released, it was a smash hit all over Mexico & the United States and it’s pretty obvious why since the movie features an all-star cast, a great story based on a very popular corrido and of course has lots of cool gun-firing action. This is a movie that is going to entertain you all the way through with no bullshit whatsoever. 

 Mario Almada really outdid himself as the newly gunmen Lucio Peña since he played this role so believably well. Lucio was once a man who at first had not much going for him & the only woman he ever loved disappeared on him. Once he avenges his brother’s death; his life changes to one of crime & he’s living it up and when he finds his lost love Mayra after so many years, he does whatever it takes to get her out of the hands of his boss. He found what he was looking for almost all his life, but sadly in the wrong places. Lucio is the kind of character all too familiar among regional Mexico. Another interesting character of the movie is Alvaro Zermeño’s Generoso since this man is full of emotions & straight up shows no mercy when it comes to his work. We are introduced to Generoso drinking away in a dive bar after getting his heartbroken by a woman. He talks about his fear of death, which to him will be in the appearance of an attractive young woman. This of course is introduced later in the movie and it’s so poetic & eerie. Generoso despite his tough appearance, just wants to be loved because he’s never truly found it from anyone he thought have loved him. Generoso is yet another kind of character all too familiar among regional Mexico. A man full of emotions & fears, but trying to hide it among drinking heavily & working hard. 

Every character in the movie is so interesting, but Mario’s & Alvaro’s have always intrigued me since they have so much to tell about and what is told is often something we have heard about before. In some cases, we have known people like this as well. 

 Next to its intriguing plot & characters, the music in the movie is wonderfully picked. The corrido that the movie is based on “Pistoleros Famosos” is played beautifully by the original Los Cadetes De Linares. I’m not 100% sure that these were based on real gunmen from Nuevo León, but more than likely they were since this was written by popular singer/songwriter Julian Garza who had often written songs about real criminals. “Pistoleros Famosos” had been around since the early 70’s and had been recorded first by the duo Carlos y Jose, but it wasn’t until the 80’s when Los Cadetes De Linares covered it that it became a very popular song that is still beloved to this day. It naturally plays in the opening credits & ending of the movie. Los Cadetes De Linares also appear in the movie performing “El Asesino” as our 4 gunmen arrive to the party looking so badass. As Los Cadetes perform El Asesino, we get glimpses of everyone at the party watching the performance & then we see our gunmen watching the performance & really getting into the song. They either smile & nod to the song as if they are agreeing with what’s being sung about, which is telling the story of a man who finds out his wife has deceived him with another man, so he then kills her and while he knows he has to pay for his crime, he will turn himself in only after he kills his wife’s lover. True machismo shit right here!

Popular mariachi singer Rosenda Bernal performs a sappy love song that goes perfectly well with the scene going on and that is when Lucio sees Mayra for the first time in a long time. They stare at each other and you can see the love & sadness they both have for each other. Another popular singer named Ramon Ayala performs in the movie as his girl dances away with a drunkard at the bar. "Chaparra De Mi Amor" is the song that plays and it's a very catchy song that is still adored to this very day.

I also cannot forget to mention how much action is in the movie! While it’s not crazy like Entre Hierba, Polvo y Plomo, we still get plenty of gun-firing action from our famous gunmen and we all love seeing the Almada brothers shooting away and Alvaro Zermeño just as well. The shootout between the gunmen and their boss is one of my favorite scenes since they kill all the guards & while it’s only the boss left standing, he lets Mayra go to Lucio and all the boss has now is defeat from the men he once relied on for his dirty work. Augh! Amazing.. 

Pistoleros Famosos is a movie that came from a popular corrido and brought to life perfectly. This is a movie that was so hyped up back in the day and you will see why. There have been plenty of movies like this for sure, but Pistoleros Famosos still stands out so much right next to La Banda Del Carro Rojo. It is a must see for Almada Brothers enthusiasts & action movie enthusiasts as well. Do not miss the most badass movie ever shot in Monterey, Nuevo León.