5 Classic Action Movies Made Better With Machete

It took almost 200 films and 27 years, but on Friday Danny Trejo will hit theaters in his first leading role: Machete. Though the actor has always been known as a total badass, never has it been more evident than in his role as an ex-federale trying to take down a corrupt senator and get revenge for the death of his family. Even at 66-years-old, Trejo is able to execute bloody carnage better than action stars half his age. It's taken too long. Trejo should have been an action hero long before this, and what better way to prove that than by taking Machete out of his own universe and placing him in some of the greatest action films of all time instead.

Here's what the world would have been like, had Danny Trejo received his due a long time ago. I've remade five classic, iconic action movies in Machete's image. In a world… where Machete replaces characters like Roger Murtaugh, Snake Plissken, John McClane, Sarah Connor and Neo… Machete wouldn't do things their way. Here's what happens when you mess with the wrong Mexican… in other movies.

Machete in Lethal Weapon

Getting a call about a suicide jumper, Machete and Riggs rush to the scene. After Riggs handles the situation by handcuffing himself to the jumper and leaping with him on to the airbag below, Machete grabs him and rushes him to a local coffee shop. While Murtaugh handled the situation by giving Riggs a gun and telling him to shoot himself, Machete chooses a different tact. Whipping out his signature blade, Machete stabs Riggs in the shoulder, being sure to not hit any bones. He then tells Riggs about his need to take down Torrez, the leader of the drug cartel who killed his wife and daughter and that no psycho gringo is going to stand in his way.

Both understanding Machete's pain over losing his wife and realizing that the Mexican federale is far crazier than himself, Riggs makes a decision to sober up and help Machete in any way that he can. Machete says, “Fuck you, puto” and exits the coffee shop with Riggs still pinned to the wall. Viewing these events from across the street, Mr. Joshua says, “Fuck it,” packs up and decides to leave the country to ensure his own safety.

Machete in Escape from New York

Following the crash of Air Force One in New York, which has now become a city-sized prison, recently arrested Machete is called on by USPF Commissioner Bob Hauk as the one to rescue the president from those holding him hostage. But before going behind the walls, Machete is told that he needs to be given a routine injection. While the doctor's first 10 needles break on Machete's rough, leather-textured skin, they finally succeed and Machete is then informed that they have, in fact, just injected him with an explosive device that will kill him should he fail to complete his mission in the next 24 hours.

Incredibly pissed off, Machete grumbles and takes one of his many knives off of his vest. As Hauk and the doctor watch in horror, Machete digs the explosives out of his neck and throws it down at Hauk's feet. ”I make my own time, chingado.” Machete, bleeding from his neck, goes to the glider and rescues the president. Before leaving the island, however, Machete stabs The Duke in the gut, bangs all of the female Gypsies, and gets all of the prisoners to begin acting right and organize a society – all within the 24 hours originally allotted to him.

Machete in Die Hard

For John McClane, the handling of the hostage situation at Nakatomi Plaza was about subtlety and sneaking around. Machete doesn't do subtle – this is the man who breaks into a drug dealer's compound by driving a car through it. So while standing in his wife's office, listening to Hans Gruber and his men take control of the room, Machete immediately leaps into action and cuts off Karl's right arm.

In a state of utter shock, watching his plan go to hell after only 30 seconds, Hans stands in the doorway, limp-wristed as Machete walks over to him. Machete takes the gun from Hans' hand, takes out the bullets, and gives it back to him, saying, “No bullets, concha?” Machete then headbutts him, knocking him unconscious, and throws him through a plate glass window. Having no idea what to do without their leader, the rest of the gang drops their weapons and walk out the door with their hands in the air. The Machete version of Die Hard has a seven minute run time.

Machete in The Terminator

While his knowledge of technology is limited (he knows how to supe up a car, videotape a threesome, and only recently learned how to text), Machete is the man that can lead the resistance against the robot uprising. To eliminate him as a threat, the robots send a 800 Series Terminator back in time to destroy him. Unable to locate Machete (his number is unlisted), the Terminator begins to intimidate and kill civilians to find him. Big mistake.

Word travels back to Machete about this and he assembles an underground network of illegal immigrants fighting for their rights in America. Riding around in an army of low-riders and motorcycles, armed to the teeth, the group finds the Terminator and the battle begins. While the Terminator is able to hold is own against the motorcycles and bullets, he meets his end when he is crushed to death under Machete's hydraulically-lifted car.

Machete in The Matrix

As evidenced during his battle with The Terminator, just because Machete lacks education about technology doesn't mean he's not the right one to do battle against it. So when Trinity and Morpheus approach the ex-federale about ending human slavery in the Matrix, Machete takes the red pill. After being brought into the real world, he's offered training to understand what he's truly capable of, but refuses because he believes that any further training would be pointless. He then plugs himself into the Matrix to do battle with the Agents by himself, confusing everyone on board the Nebuchadnezzar. Morpheus explains it by saying that, “He is starting to believe.”

Machete wanders into an old apartment building and the Agents think they have him trapped. They fire round after round at him, but the bullets cannot penetrate his sun-baked skin. Machete retaliates by decapitating all three Agents. Agent Smith laughs, thinking that he can just move into another body. What he doesn't understand is that when Machete kills something, it stays dead. Humanity is freed, Zion is saved and America doesn't have to sit through the sequels. It's a happy ending for everybody.

Eric Eisenberg
Assistant Managing Editor

Eric Eisenberg is the Assistant Managing Editor at CinemaBlend. After graduating Boston University and earning a bachelor’s degree in journalism, he took a part-time job as a staff writer for CinemaBlend, and after six months was offered the opportunity to move to Los Angeles and take on a newly created West Coast Editor position. Over a decade later, he's continuing to advance his interests and expertise. In addition to conducting filmmaker interviews and contributing to the news and feature content of the site, Eric also oversees the Movie Reviews section, writes the the weekend box office report (published Sundays), and is the site's resident Stephen King expert. He has two King-related columns.