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Nacho Libre (PG)

Release Date: June 16th, 2006 by Paramount Pictures.
The Cast: Jack Black, Héctor Jiménez, Ana De La Reguera, Richard Montoya, Cesar Gonzalez, Darius Rose.
Directed by Jared Hess.

BASIC PREMISE: Nacho (Black), a cook at a Mexican monastery, secretly dons a cape at night and becomes a Lucha Libre wrestler at night to earn enough money to save the monastery’s orphans from starvation.

ENTERTAINMENT VALUE: As usual, Jack Black has abundant energy, charisma, and great comic timing which helps to make Nacho Libre a thoroughly entertaining comedy. The plot, loosely based on a true story, seems absurd and occasionally silly. In other words, it’s exactly what any fan of Jack Black would expect. Nacho quickly befriends Esqueleto (Jiménez), a very thin Mexican with an accent who becomes his wrestling partner. Together, Nacho and Esqueleto make a hilarious duo at the Lucha ring even though they lose their matches. Nacho’s challenge is that in order to maximize his earnings and save the orphans, he must actually win for a change. He also wants to impress the beautiful Sister Encarnación (De La Reguera). Screenwriters Jared Hess, Jerusha Hess, and Mike White expertly weave comedy with drama so that you not only like Nacho, but care about him as well. Admittedly, he does seem irritating during early scenes, but his quirkiness and charm quickly grow on you. Much humor comes from his Black’s and Jiménez’s performances as they play off of each other—although the comedy goes a bit too far with some unnecessary toilet humor which feels too juvenile. Director Jared Hess, who also wrote and directed Napoleon Dynamite, proves once again that he knows how to entertain his target audience who like physical humor as well as quirky underdogs with absurdly funny sidekicks.

SPIRITUAL VALUE: None is required or desired.

INSULT TO YOUR INTELLIGENCE: None, as long as you suspend your disbelief.


IN A NUTSHELL: Outrageously funny! Jack Black is terrific. A comic delight for all fans of Napoleon Dynamite and Jack Black.

RECOMMENDED WAY TO WATCH: Movie Theater (1st Run)

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