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Thursday, January 27, 2011

Three Amigos (released in 1986) - A musical comedy starring Chevy Chase, Steve Martin, and Martin Short

Steve Martin, Chevy Chase and Micheal Short star in this Musical comedy of 1986 and is directed by John Landis. The movie is co-scripted by Steve Martin who provides the ultimate comic touch, the real “Steve Martin” touch.
The movie opens with a raid in Santo Poco, a small village in Mexico by the Ruthless bandit El Guapo and his men. Carmen the daughter of the village head prays for a hero to save them and on one of her visits to the church sees the American silent movie featuring the three Amigos. Taking them to be real super heroes, she sends a telegram for help. But the clerk at the telegraph office whittles down her message as she does not have enough to pay.
Meanwhile in Los Angeles, Lucky Day, Dusty Bottoms and Ned Neerlander star as the three Amigos in the movie series. They demand a price hike from the studio head who fires them for their temerity and evict them from their houses. Down in luck and out in the streets they receive Carmen's telegram and mistaking her appeal as an invitation for making a movie with El Guapo, they break in to the studios costume room, steal the costumes and flee across the border to Mexico.

They reach a “cantina” near the village and are mistaken as associates of a sharp shooting German Pilot who has wreaked havoc at the bar. I really like this sequence when the three amigos actually belt out the song “my Little Buttercup” to the mean scraggy crowd at the bar. Its hard to keep a straight face through out the sequences and I wonder how the actors did it. They are found by the German and in the mix up that follows they are put up at the best houses and are flown to the village. Carmen soon arrives to bring them home. At the village they are feted and treated and soon some minor bandits arrive to get their protection money. Mistaking them to be talent scouts, the Amigos put up a show which scares the wits out of the bandits and they ride away. The ecstatic villagers celebrate and keep them in style.
El Guapo swears to find the Amigos and kill them by morning and rides into the village. As the truth dawns, the Amigo's are scared witless and beg forgiveness from El Guapo. El Guapo punishes the villagers and loots them, as the Amigos leave in disgrace. He kidnaps Carmen and intends to make her his bride to punish her for her involvement. As the Amigos trudge their way back home, Ned reminds them that they have none waiting for them. He exhorts them to go back and at least try to save Carmen and be real heroes. After many disagreements they come together to find Guapo's hide out and soon follow the German plane which delivers ammunition for the gang. Amidst the celebrations of the bandits wedding the Amigos sneak in to the hideout only to be caught. The German Pilot gets in to a shooting match with Ned and he wins to give them enough time to escape. As the Amigos reach the village they exhorts the villagers to fight the evil bandit. El Guapo in his last raid is brought down by the combined might and the Amigos ride in the the sun set as real heroes.
This movie was well received by critics and audience alike and is well crafted. I feel the funny quotient diminishes as the movie progresses, but still is eminently watchable.

Three Amigos (released in 1986) - A musical comedy starring Chevy Chase, Steve Martin, and Martin Short

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