In this article, we examine what would happen if The Magnificent Seven met The Three Stooges. What am I blabbering about you ask? I’m referring to the 1986 comedy “Three Amigos”.
Set in the Wild West, Three Amigos is both a comedy of errors and an underdog tale. When young Carmen, played by Patrice Martinez, goes to a town in Mexico in the hopes of finding gunslingers to help defend her home town, the little village of Santa Poco, from the “terrible, evil, murderous, villainous El Guapo”, she stumbles across a screening of a film showing three brave men defeating a group of bandits. Mistaking the film for the truth she promptly sends a telegram to the Three Amigos in Hollywood, California. To save some money the words used to describe El Guapo get replaced by the word “infamous”.
Meanwhile, the Amigos themselves run into some problems of their own when they get fired from the movie studio they work for. It’s not long before they receive this “ten Peso version” of the telegram sent from Mexico. Mistakenly believing that the word “infamous” merely means incredibly famous, and misinterpreting the rest of the telegram Lucky Day (Steve Martin: Roxanne, Housesitter, Father of the Bride), Ned Nederlander (Martin Short: Father of the Bride, Innerspace, Santa Clause 3) and Dusty Bottoms (Chevy Chase: Foul Play, Spies Like Us, Caddyshack) promptly set off to Mexico to put on a show. Upon discovering the truth they decide to stop acting like heroic gunfighters and actually become gunfighters, in an attempt to save the village of Santa Poco.
Written by Steve Martin and directed by John Landis (Spies Like Us, Blues Brothers, Trading Places) Three Amigos comes complete with a cast of Mexicans, gunslingers, Germans, invisible swordsmen and many more zany characters guaranteed to give you more than a few good laughs.
The script is formulaic but well written and filled with good jokes, silly puns and generally manages to spoof the Western genre while paying respectful homage to the genre too. Music comes from the pen of Randy Newman, better known for the soundtrack to Toy Story and series like Monk, and helps to set the mood whether it be an action scene, comic moment or even romantic interlude.
All in all Three Amigos is a fun, comic Western romp that is suitable for the whole family and a great popcorn movie when you merely want to relax.