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Assassination Tango
Assassination Tango
Actors: Robert Duvall, Luciana Pedraza, Rubén Blades, Kathy Baker, Julio Oscar Mechoso
Director: Robert Duvall
Genres: Drama, Mystery & Suspense
R     2003     1hr 54min

OscarÂ(r) winner* Robert Duvall writes, directs and stars in this "fascinating" (Roger Ebert) tale of dancing, deception and deadly passion on the sizzling streets of Argentina. Starring Ruben Blades, Kathy Baker and Lucia...  more »

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Movie Details

Actors: Robert Duvall, Luciana Pedraza, Rubén Blades, Kathy Baker, Julio Oscar Mechoso
Director: Robert Duvall
Creators: Robert Duvall, Raúl Outeda, Francis Ford Coppola, Linda Reisman, Rob Carliner, Steven Brown
Genres: Drama, Mystery & Suspense
Sub-Genres: Love & Romance, Mystery & Suspense
Studio: MGM (Video & DVD)
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen,Anamorphic - Closed-captioned,Dubbed,Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 12/09/2003
Original Release Date: 01/01/2003
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/2003
Release Year: 2003
Run Time: 1hr 54min
Screens: Color,Widescreen,Anamorphic
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 1
Members Wishing: 0
MPAA Rating: R (Restricted)
Languages: English, Portuguese, Spanish, Portuguese, Spanish
Subtitles: English, Spanish, Portuguese

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Member Movie Reviews

Mary C. from ERIE, PA
Reviewed on 8/12/2011...
Great dancing and music and a beautiful looking movie. However, the characters and story more like stereotypes than fully developed people.

Movie Reviews

A major actor's ego trip that could be worth viewing
David Thomson | Houston, TX USA | 04/16/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Robert Duvall is among the greatest film actors of the last forty years. He fills the screen and it is virtually impossible for any other actor to upstage him. This films reminds me of the time when Richard Burton read off the names in a phone book---and the audience was held spellbound by the late thespian?s ability to make such a normally boring event seem wildly interesting. ?Assassination Tango? lacks coherence and is something of a rambling mess. And yet, I found the experience highly rewarding. Duvall is a director of modest talent. The movie is supposedly about a overage professional killer who must travel to Argentina to assassinate a retired general who is allegedly guilty of crimes against humanity. None of this ever makes any logical sense. But the dancing and the beautiful cinematography are exhilarating. Duvall has the extraordinary talent to turn meandering dialogues into riveting scenes. We are entranced by his character?s adoration of the girlfriend?s daughter. The flirtations between John J. Anderson (Duvall) and the gorgeous and significantly younger tango instructor Manuella (Luciana Pedraza) are poignant and even a bit touching. ?Assassination Tango? is definitely not for everyone. I give it four stars, and recommend it only to those who believe that great acting alone can salvage a less than well put together script. In many respects ?Assassination Tango? is nothing more than Robert Duvall?s grandiose ego trip. Nonetheless, it still might be well worth an evening of your time."
This is clearly an act of love for Duvall.
Mark Hammond | Chambersburg, PA USA | 04/07/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Robert Duvall is one of the best actors of the late 20th Century. We are aware of Duvall's versatility in movies in everything from "The Godfather" and "The Apostle" to "Gods and Generals." Few people outside the tango community know that he is a passionate tango dancer. It is obvious that this production was an act of love. This movie will probably not go into general release at your local theater. I really expect it to have a limited release. Notwithstanding that, my advice to you is to see it even if you have to drive two hours [one way] to go to a theater as my wife and I did recently. It was really worthwhile.It is a movie that did not do well in the Toronto Film Festival in 2002. Because of that, certain portions of the film were re-shot in Buenos Aires. Even still, the movie provoked discussion on the Tango-L listserv. It has been criticized for its "weak" plot. I find the plot less complicated than Sally Porter's "Tango Lesson," and the style of dancing to be less of the "fantasy tango" style and more of the salon style that you see in Buenos Aires today. This movie will have definite appeal to milongueros and tango junkies, as well as some die-hard ballroom dancers.I loved the dancing in the movie, and I really wish there was more of it. A few years ago, I was pleased to have seen some of the people in the movie dance several years ago at Duvall's farm in northern Virginia. This is the kind of dancing I like. I would love it if there were a "director's cut" of this movie available soon. I would be the first to buy it."
Does not quite click
Joseph Haschka | Glendale, CA USA | 04/15/2003
(3 out of 5 stars)

"Actor Robert Duvall apparently has a liking for the tango dance, and wanted to share his passion with the world via a film. However, perhaps he felt that something needed to be added to the storyline to reach a wider audience. Thus, as writer, director, and producer of ASSASSINATION TANGO, he added another plot - or is it a subplot? - about a professional killer hired for a South American wet job. Duvall plays John Anderson, an aging hit man in the employ of Big Apple mobster, Frankie (Frank Gio). The light of Anderson's life is 10-year old Jenny (Katherine Miller), the daughter of his significant other, Maggie (Kathy Baker). Though Jenny's birthday is the following week, John accepts an assignment in Argentina to whack a retired general. Frankie assures him that the job should only take three days - a quick down and back in time for birthday cake and presents. However, once in Buenos Aires, the hit is postponed, and John must cool his heels for three weeks. During that period, Anderson's anger over the delay dissipates as he discovers the tango. Or rather, as he re-discovers the tango, which is more structured and passionately choreographed in Argentina than the comparatively staid version back home. And it doesn't hurt that he becomes enthralled with tango dancer Manuela (Luciana Pedraza), who consents to give him lessons.It's not that ASSASSINATION TANGO is a bad film. Nothing with Duvall can be awful. But the bilateral plot didn't click. On one hand, it was never explained why the general needed killing beyond vague references to some terrible things he'd done in the past, presumably against Argentine innocents. That wasn't enough for me to cheer on Anderson's success in the endeavor beyond a laissez-faire goodwill that I would minimally grant the protagonist of any story. On the other hand, there never seemed to be much chemistry between John and Manuela. At one point early in their relationship, Anderson asks the young woman if he'd "have a chance" with her if he was younger. With a coy smile, Manuela answers that he has a chance now. It's a brief spark that fails to erupt into flames.Anderson is perhaps not one you'd want buying a prepubescent girl ice cream, though his conduct with Jenny is irreproachable and devoted. There are some murky corners to his character that go unexplored, as the encounter with an Argentine prostitute. Therefore, the best reason to see this film is the wonderful dancing. Assuming you're a tango fan, that is. If you're not particularly, then you might be reduced to ogling Pedraza's gorgeous legs to get back the price of the ticket. Not bad value, that."