"Gringo" Works Because of Charlize Theron And That's It
Gringo was a movie that could have gone either way, and the only reason it went into good movie territory was the movie star vixen known to us as Charlize Theron, the goddess, the beauty, the amazing actress who makes us believe movie stars are real and alive in an Instagram "anyone can be famous" day. People talk about Uma Thurman being our girl. No, I the screen goddess of our era has to be Miss Theron, no questions asked.
In second place: David Oyelowo giving us a great acting performance. I happen to have loved him before watching Gringo. He is brave and outspoken wanting to play characters written as people and not their skin color. In the coolest background to Gringo, click that article I linked to, and you'l read how he turned an originally white character into his own role for this very film. Star power!
Beyond them stealing every scene, Gringo is any other movie written by someone who loves Pulp Fiction fanboying it since film school. I'm not saying that negatively and more as a statement that pretty much ever since Pulp Fiction, we have like the color cerulean blue in The Devil Wears Prada. That blue was once an innovation and it trickled down to the dumpster discount store you fetched your ugly sweater out of in some bin, Anne Hathaway. Shame on you for thinking this is just "stuff." Pulp Fiction was once a big deal to the filmmaking community, this shocking new format written by an exciting new dude named Quentin someone. And it's now become every guy who ever wants to make movies imitates Quentin, Mr. Tarantino if you're nasty, as the route to go in Hollywood. It's now so prevalent a format in screenplays, you almost feel like, "This is a cool movie, but can it work anymore?"
Adding in Miss Theron, you get the sexiest bad girl ever. She takes a dull moment that could turn cheesy when she uses her appeal to convince people to do as she pleases and makes it believable. She plays a woman who isn't like a token woman character. Charlize makes her real and fly off the screenwriting page. Miss Theron deserves every ounce of money paid to her. She's that good of an actress and severely underrated in most of her roles. I wish almost she had more scenes for this movie and maybe we'd have seen a blockbuster movie. Gringo wasn't the commercial hit it should have been.
Would I recommend this? Yeah, it's not the best movie ever, but it's entertaining enough for a lazy weekend.