Inmate # 1: The Rise of Danny Trejo
review by Bobby Blakey
There are few actors that have gone through what Danny Trejo has and become the star that he is today. The latest documentary Inmate # 1: The Rise of Danny Trejo takes viewers on the painful and unbelievable journey from troubled criminal and addict to one of the most beloved actors in Hollywood, but does it do this man’ legacy justice or will it fail to get out from behind bars?
Inmate # 1: The Rise of Danny Trejo follows the shocking story of one man’s capacity to overcome his demons, only to discover redemption through the most unlikely of journeys. Through the exploration of his old stomping ground and the supporting cast of family, friends and some of the world’s biggest stars, join Danny Trejo as he delivers a raw and sobering account of his transformation from a hardened criminal to celebrated Hollywood icon and beloved friend of all who cross his path.
While I had seen him numerous times I wasn’t fully aware of him until Trejo stepped onto the screen in the 1995 film Desperado. I was unaware how much of an impact he had already been making in Hollywood at the time, but was a fan the moment he stepped onto screen in that film. Since then I will pretty much watch anything Trejo does. Sure not every film works, but he always delivers. I love that he continues to be a real life tough guy with a heart of gold who just wants to work and does his own thing.
I never needed to see this film to appreciate what Trejo does, but it takes it to a whole new level. Hearing his own story and the journey the man went through to get where he is now is truly remarkable. There is no glitz and glamour here, just real gritty life that most people would never understand. The film is structured pretty standard for a documentary, but getting to see Trejo and those that came up with him and respect him in the industry gives you a new perspective on who he really is.
Trejo is more than an actor he is a miracle in life, Hollywood and redemption. I didn’t think I could be a bigger fan of the man, but I was wrong. He is more than just gangster # 1 or Machete or Trejo’s tacos he is a man who stood his ground and smashed down walls to create a better life for himself and his family and in turn became an inspiration for the Hispanic community and those struggling with addiction around the world.
Inmate # 1: The Rise of Danny Trejo I available now on digital from Universal Home Entertainment.