Roger Ebert’s best films of 2008 review includes this about Che, the soon-to-be-released biopic of Che Guevara:
The epic journey of a 20th century icon, the Argentinian physician who became a comrade of Fidel Castro in the Cuban Revolu- tion and then moved to South America to support revolution there. Benicio del Toro is persuasive as the fiercely ethical firebrand, in a film that includes unusual and unfamiliar chapters in Che’s life. Steven Soderbergh’s film is 257 minutes long, but far from boring.
This generated the same reaction I had this morning when Howard Stern described Guevara as a freedom fighter when he introduced guest Benicio del Toro, who plays Guevara in Che. Ending dissent with murder is fiercely ethical? Agitating for dictatorship – with Che in charge, of course – is fighting for freedom?
I will never understand the bizarre fascination with Guevara as a hero.