Review of 'Che: Part Two'

che_part_2.jpg The second part of the epic Che film (see also my Review of 'Che: Part One') that sees Ernesto Che Guevara (played convincingly by Benicio Del Toro) in the final chapter of his life attempting to foster a guerilla war in Bolivia in 1966 but failing to find any real support with the local people. The troubles do not end there with a seeming lack of conviction from his fellow fighters, a lack of control of the media and the overwhelming might of the Bolivian army with the help of the cold-war-era USA seeking to undermine any influence of the Soviets.

The tone of this chapter is quite different than the first with a sense of sadness which is reflected in the dull look of the images and the slow, sad music throughout. Che here seems to be largely going through the motions with very little of the conviction and optimism that he had in the first film. Here we seem his a someone in decline, someone who has learned much of the world but who cannot help but continue to follow his chosen profession of “professional guerilla leader” regardless of the futility. To me it was quite a sad end to such an inspirational leader. The story seems to be one of mindlessly wandering through the wilderness barely scraping through scrap after scrap with the local military…and more and more often not scraping through at all. Still it is riveting to watch and there are glimpses of Che's previous brilliance in his talks to his men though then we see him struggling with his medical breathing difficulties which posed little problems earlier in his life (to be fair, it is because he loses his medication…yet another incident of his bad luck here).

This was another eye-opening film for me having not had known a lot of Che before seeing the first film. Del Toro is amazing to see on the screen with a totally convincing portrayal of the legend.

Rating: “Nearly perfect, but not quite”

Review Date: 2016-05-01

Directed by: Steven Soderbergh

Studio: Wild Bunch

Year: 2008

Length: 135 minutes

Genre: Melodrama

Other reviewed films by Steven Soderbergh: