Memories of Underdevelopment (1968)
"Memorias del subdesarrollo" (original title)

 |  Drama  |  17 May 1973 (USA)
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Reviews: 16 user | 22 critic

Sergio (Sergio Corrieri - Soy Cuba), through his life following the departure of his wife, parents and friends in the wake of the Bay of Pigs incident. Alone in a brave new world, Sergio ... See full summary »


(novel), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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3 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Complete credited cast:
Sergio Corrieri ...
Sergio Carmona Mendoyo
Daisy Granados ...
Eslinda Núñez ...
Omar Valdés ...
René de la Cruz ...
Elena's brother
Yolanda Farr
Ofelia González
Jose Gil Abad
Daniel Jordan
Luis López
Rafael Sosa
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Eduardo Casado Revuelta
René Depestre ...
Himself / Panelist
Edmundo Desnoes ...
Pello el Afrokán


Sergio (Sergio Corrieri - Soy Cuba), through his life following the departure of his wife, parents and friends in the wake of the Bay of Pigs incident. Alone in a brave new world, Sergio observes the constant threat of foreign invasion while chasing young women all over Havana before finally meeting Elena (Daisy Granados), a young virgin girl he seeks to mould into the image of his ex-wife, but at what cost to himself? Written by Mr Bongo

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Release Date:

17 May 1973 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Memories of Underdevelopment  »

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| (TV)

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Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?


When the US National Society of Film Critics awarded the film a special prize in 1973, Alea was denied a visa to attend the ceremony. See more »


Featured in I am Cuba, the Siberian Mammoth (2005) See more »

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User Reviews

A classic from a very troubled year
11 February 2007 | by (Seattle, WA) – See all my reviews

Sergio, a bourgeois intellectual living off of (seemingly tenuous) rental income as a property holder, decides to stay in Cuba. The conflict set up between his intellectual convictions and the reality of Cuban life in the wake of the revolution makes up the central problem of the film. The film presents a year in the life of the protagonist, a year culminating in the missile crises of 1962. What makes the film is the candid nature of it's reflections on the role of the intellectual in political life - certainly THE hot topic during the summer of 1968. The film is also a stylistic tour de force, welding together neorealistic drama, newsreel footage, montages of life in contemporary Havana as seen from Sergio's flat (through a telescope), and some filmed Shavian-styled debates amid the action. Far from being a typical propaganda piece, the films treatment of the future of the revolution was very open ended, candid, and thoughtful. It's a film that emerges from the debates about the future and which stages it's own participation in that debate. The film features two significant cameos: Edmundo Desnoes - the author of the novel on which the film is based, and Gutierez Alea himself. Both cameos occur in diegetic reflections about art: a debate about literature in the case of Desnoes, and a talk with a young director in the case of Alea. This film is almost impossible to find in the US thanks to the Cuban expatriate zealot nonsense. It's available in Mexico though - on a fairly well mastered DVD. It's worth seeking out. It's one of the best Cuban films ever and one of the greatest films of the new wave era.

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