Ed Driscoll

"You Can't Spell Cliche Without 'Che'"

If you gnashed your teeth at Nick Gillespie’s video look at Hollywood’s obsession with terrorist chic, you’re really going to hate “‘Che’ It Ain’t So“, Kyle Smith’s review of Steven Soderbergh’s endless encomium to everyone’s favorite murderous thug and T-shirt icon. For the rest of us, here’s a sample:

Meet Che Guevara. Just think of him as Jesus plus Abraham Lincoln with a touch of Moses and Dr. Doug Ross. After 4 1/2 hours of watching Dr. Ernesto “Che” Guevara heal the sick, teach the illiterate, daze the women, execute the lawless, defeat the corrupt, uplift the peasantry and spew the sound bite, I was convinced there would be a scene in which he turned water to Bacardi.

You can’t spell cliche without “Che.” And as I endured this mad dream directed – or perhaps committed – by Steven Soderbergh, I wondered where I’d seen it all before. The booted stomping through the greensward, the jungly target shooting? It’s a remake of Woody Allen’s “Bananas,” right? Minus punch lines – or perhaps with them. “We are in a difficult situation,” Che observes, at a point when his army is surrounded and forced to eat its horses.

The story of the Argentine doctor Ernesto “Che” Guevara is played with much broody self-importance by Benicio Del Toro. It will be shown in two parts after its one-week opening run. That way, on consecutive evenings, it can bore everyone but activist grad students.

Read the whole thing.