This is such an oddball comedy that its appeal is inevitably very slim. It’s by the same people who brought you Napolean Dynamite, which itself a polarizing film, though it had a wider appeal. Jared and Jerusha Hess have a very bizarre and very specific sense of humour. Nacho Libre isn’t for everyone and that’s okay.
Nacho is a Mexican monk (Jack Black) who cooks bleak meals in an orphanage who has spent his whole life dreaming of something more. The arrival of a beautiful nun, Sister Encarnacion (Ana de la Reguera) inspires him to finally follow his passion of being a luchador. A luchador is a Mexican wrestler; they wear sparkly full-face masks which they never ever remove. Nacho meets a skinny but scrappy homeless man, Esqueleto (Hector Jimenez) and they soon form a wrestling duo that transforms their lives, and that of the orphans. But the monastery wants to shut down Nacho’s wrestling career and the wrestling federation wants to squelch an outsider like Nacho. And Nacho just wants to impress a woman who is technically already married to god.
Anyway, I decided to revisit this movie after our own trip to Mexico a few weeks ago. On New Year’s Eve the resort set up a street fair that included a luchador ring. My nephews, ages 8 and 6 were of course ecstatic but watching it go down live and in person, I found it even harder to take seriously that this movie.
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