‘We Can Be Heroes’ Review: Robert Rodriguez’s Genial Homemade Kiddie Superhero Flick for Netflix

Robert Rodriguez famously made his first feature, “El Mariachi” (1993), for $7,000, and in the years since he’s made a point, rather charmingly, of staying in touch with that DIY side of himself.

This first became apparent in the early 2000s, when he churned out three “Spy Kids” films in a row, working out of a home studio where he wrote, directed, edited, and shot these cheeky Bondian kiddie flicks with a gizmoid invention as airy and frictionless as the films’ homegrown FX — but in a way it all played as a sly poke at Hollywood becoming a big-budget toy factory.

The joke still had a tinge of resonance in “The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl 3-D” (2005), a superhero lark that had the benefit of coming out three years before “Iron Man” — that is, before the culture became so inundated with comic-book mythology that it began to wink at its own top-heavy escapism.

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