After creating a probably heavily romantcized version of the life of the blood-thirsty-tyrranical asshole that is Che Guevara, Benicio Del Toro faced a heated questioning of one of Guevara's victims, to which he couldn't respond, and ended up walking out because "the questions made him uncomfortable". Here is a beautiful part of the article:
Mr. del Toro doesn't deny that Guevara's persona had some darker aspects. "We have to omit a lot of stuff about his life," he said, "but we're not omitting the fact that he's for capital punishment, which is the essence of that."
In the movie, Guevara is shown executing a man. But the man is executed for raping a child, not for being disloyal to the cause of revolution. Troops are offered a chance to desert, and get nothing more than a scolding for their cowardice.
Mr. Valladares is less convinced of Guevara's dedication to due process.
"Che Guevara executed dozens and dozens of people who never once stood trial and were never declared guilty," he said. "In his own words, he said the following: 'At the smallest of doubt we must execute.' And that's what he did at the Sierra Maestra and the prison of Las Cabanas."
"They didn't do it blindly; they had trials," Mr. del Toro said. "They found them guilty, and they executed them – that's capital punishment."
But Mr. Radosh said it wasn't as simple as that.
"Huber Matos was guilty of nothing," he said. Mr. Matos was a commandant under Fidel Castro, one of the revolutionary's earliest followers and a fervent enemy of the Batista regime. But he was no communist, and when he saw where the country was headed, he wanted out.
"He didn't even want to go into opposition," said Mr. Radosh. "He simply said, 'I don't like the direction of the government, I don't want to be part of the government, I'll voluntarily relinquish my command.' He was convicted of treason, and after a sham trial that Fidel presided over, was sent to prison for a 25- to 30-year sentence."
Guevara was instrumental in the creation of Cuba's forced labor camps, which were used to imprison and extract work from those who had committed no crimes but were thought to be insufficiently revolutionary.
The policy of extrajudicial imprisonment that Guevara favored would later expand to include political activists of all stripes, musicians, artists, homosexuals and others deemed to be dangerous to the maintenance of the Stalinist regime.
Mr. del Toro grew agitated when these prisons were described as "concentration camps," a phrase that Mr. Valladares freely employs.
"I'm a survivor of those concentration camps. And I stand firm by my belief that they were concentration camps," he said. "The forced labor camps where I also worked, where dozens and dozens of political prisoners were murdered, where thousands were tortured, that's something that even the most ardent believers in Castro´s tyranny can't deny."
Critics of "Che" have suggested that the film whitewashes its protagonist's legacy and that it's impossible to understand the man by glorifying his more romantic aspects while ignoring his darker side.
"We can't cover it all," Mr. del Toro said. "You can make your own movie. You know? You can make your own movie. And let's see. Do the research."