Movie Review: ¡Three Amigos! (1986)

Starring: Chevy Chase, Steve Martin and Martin Short

Directed by: John Landis

Three actors who are a little short on their luck in Hollywood accept an invitation to a remote Mexican village to perform as their heroic on screen personas unaware that the situation they find themselves in is the real deal.

Chevy Chase and Steve Martin are iconic actors known for their comedic brilliance during the eighties and while Martin Short stars alongside these two comedy powerhouses and isn’t as widely known he’s no slouch either having made a great career for himself within the world of comedy. The Three Amigos had the recipe for success with its three lead stars but for whatever reason didn’t manage to become a comedy classic like some of the other movies Chase and Martin have starred in. We were treated with moments of hysterics followed by spells of quite dull and lacklustre story telling which was a little bit of a shame as I have become to expect better, especially from Steve Martin. With that being said Steve Martin was arguably the best performer in the show as a large portion of the laughs came from him as he can make you laugh so effortlessly. I grew up during the nineties and used to really enjoy watching people like Jim Carrey and Roman Atkinson as they could make you laugh simply with their facial expressions and that’s exactly what Steve Martin and Chevy Chase for that matter are able to accomplish. Today’s comedy is less about expressions and more about vulgarity which I don’t mind but when I watch Steve Martin and the stars of yesteryear I’ll forever be impressed with their comedic presence and their lack of reliance on strong language to make an audience laugh.

The story was quite predictable and was a little stupid at times as I didn’t really understand the addition of the singing bush and invisible swordsman section of the movie as it simply added nothing in terms of story development and had no comedic value either. As I mentioned above, I loved both Steve Martin and Chevy Chase in this film and really enjoyed Alfonso Arau’s performance as the villainous El Guapo but Martin Short as the third Amigo just didn’t seem to fit in. There was something off about him which didn’t quite fit with the rest of the cast and his comedy felt incredibly forced whereas his co-stars seemed to effortlessly make me laugh. Out of all the high quality comedy actors that were around during the eighties I just think there were a huge amount of options that could’ve been cast ahead of Martin Short that would’ve added a great deal more value to the movie than he managed to.

Overall, Three Amigos was a fairly decent movie that is watchable for Steve Martin alone. The comedy was good for the most part although some jokes haven’t aged well at all. Certainly worth checking out although a recast of Martin Short would’ve greatly improved the film.


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