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Che
Director Steven Soderberg's biopic of Latin American revolutionary Che Guevara is just under five hours long. The first part centers on the Cuban Revolution, the second, on the failed insurgency in Bolivia.
C

he
Directed by Steven Soderbergh
(R)

***

The life story of Latin American revolutionary Che Guevara

Che “studiously resists the traps and conventions” of most Hollywood biopics, said Sheri Linden in the Los Angeles Times. Director Steven Soderbergh paints an “extraordinary and challenging” portrait of Argentine radical Ernesto “Che” Guevara (Benicio Del Toro) in a two-part film running just under five hours. The first part, “The Argentine,” charts the successful Cuban Revolution of the late 1950s. “Guerilla” focuses on the failed Bolivian insurgency, which ended in Che’s death, in 1967. Soderbergh’s painstakingly crafted film “favors action over psychology,” details over drama, and authentication over “aha moments.” Although the director shows an “obsessive devotion to precise documentation,” Che doesn’t tell the complete story, said Peter Brunette in The Hollywood Reporter. Preoccupied with emphasizing Guevara’s benevolence, he never examines the man’s contradictions. Che is “epic hagiography,” said A.O. Scott in The New York Times. The film removes the rebel “from the realm of ordinary human sympathy.” Soderbergh may have drawn from Che’s own writings, but his film is more “fairy tale” than fact.

 

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