IMDb > Alambrista! (1977)

Alambrista! (1977) More at IMDbPro »


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Release Date:
16 October 1977 (USA) See more »
After the birth of his first child, Roberto, a young Mexican man slips across the border into the United States. Seeking work to support his family back home, he finds that working hard is not enough. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
4 wins See more »
User Reviews:
very humbling to watch as a gringo See more (6 total) »


  (in credits order)
Domingo Ambriz ... Roberto

Trinidad Silva ... Joe
Linda Gillen ... Sharon

Ned Beatty ... Anglo Coyote

Jerry Hardin ... Man in cafe

Julius Harris ... 2nd Drunk
Ludevina Mendez Salazar ... Roberto's Wife
Maria Guadalupe Chavez ... Roberto's Mother
Rafaela Cervantes de Gomez ... Midwife
Feliz Cedano ... Tomato Field Mayordomo
Edward Lopez ... Contratista
Evelyn Chieko Saito ... Strawberry Field Owner
Tom Tar ... Strawberry Field Owner
Gabriel Segura ... Strawberry Field Mayordomo
Paul Berrones ... Berto
George Smith ... Cook in Cafe
Dennis Harris ... Sharon's Brother

Edward James Olmos ... 1st Drunk (as Edward Olmos)
Mark Herder ... Cop in Cafe (as Officer Mark Herder)
Maria Elena Delgado ... Woman in Post Office
J.D. Hurt ... Revival Preacher (as Reverend J.D. Hurt)
Salvador Martinez ... Mexican Coyote
Maurice Green ... Truck Driver
R.L. Dick Rautenberg ... Junkyard Owner
Kent Rautenberg ... Junkyard Owner
Félix José Álvarez ... Junkyard Cook
John Sandoval ... Roberto's Father
Alfred Alvernaz ... Watermelon Field Crew Boss
Constantine Copulos ... Highway Patrol Officer (as Officer Constantine Copulos)
J.C. Lamont ... Border Officials (as Officer J.C. Lamont)
Thomas Coffman ... Border Officials (as Officer Thomas Coffman)
Virginia Bachicha
Armandina Ramirez
Lily Álvarez ... Pregnant Woman

Directed by
Robert M. Young 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Robert M. Young 

Produced by
Michael Hausman .... producer
Sandra Schulberg .... associate producer
Barbara Schultz .... executive producer
David Streit .... associate producer
Irwin Young .... producer (as Irwin W. Young)
Original Music by
Michael Martin Murphey 
Cinematography by
Tom Hurwitz 
Robert M. Young 
Film Editing by
Edward Beyer 
Norman Buckley (director's cut)
Art Direction by
Lilly Kilvert 
Production Management
Nick Athas .... post-production supervisor (director's cut)
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Michael Hausman .... assistant director
Sound Department
Paul Jaeger .... re-recording
Mitch Wirth .... sound editor
Camera and Electrical Department
Michael F. Barrow .... gaffer
Peter Barrow .... key grip
Glenn Kershaw .... assistant camera
Editorial Department
Jay Dranch .... assistant editor
Other crew
Donald Wylie .... location coordinator
Sara Young .... caterer (uncredited)

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"The Illegal" - USA (alternative title)
See more »
110 min | 96 min (director's cut)
Aspect Ratio:
1.66 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

Robert M. Young's first feature film.See more »


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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful.
very humbling to watch as a gringo, 16 May 2013
Author: Chris Haskell ( from United States

It is difficult to talk about this movie without getting political, but maybe that's the point? Not sure, anyways, there were a few very powerful moments in the film for me. The most common point of discomfort was the multiple times Roberto had all of his choices, and thereby his freedoms, taken away. He had a vision for what he wanted out of America, and it was uncomfortable to watch his version of how he wanted his life to go be shattered by the unforgiving reality of how undocumented workers are treated.

Perhaps the thing that struck me the hardest, however, was how quickly life changed. There were a few times throughout the movie where, without warning, Roberto's life was drastically altered. I was aware of the fact that this type of thing happens, but seeing it played out was emotionally exhausting, I can't imagine what it must be like to live it.

I really hope this film gets rediscovered. It's a seemingly very brutal and honest portrayal of the very difficult decisions and sacrifices migrant workers have to make.

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