The bewildering life and death of Ernesto “Che” Guevara find their match in Steven Soderbergh’s puzzling, peculiar, double-headed experimental biopic – or bio-epic: elliptical, fragmented, analytic, unexplanatory – but strangely involving.
The camera style, hand-held but not hand-holding, is very cool, distant, non-committal – Soderbergh is again his own cinematographer; and there’s little about Che’s personal life, little “human interest”.
Yet Benicio Del Toro’s Che is terrific: his heroic little smile and passionate reserve make this revolutionary’s charisma believable (and justify his Cannes award).
It took eight years to set up and just 79 days to shoot.
"It was a lot of responsibility and pressure for Benicio," says Soderbergh.
He is congenial, humorous and, yes, since you ask, sexy. "I was very lucky: I met people who actually knew him.