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I've seen this movie three times and I've always gotten the same feeling. It is far from being perfect but nevertheless it has a powerful force thats goes through it. It is maybe Sanchez's strong faith in family values, who knows. Anthony Quinn really gives one of his warmest and more intense performances here; he is truly believable as Sanchez and never tries to overact as he used to in other movies. What I found really interesting is the fact that Quinn seems a sympathetic character, but he's full with contradictions and flaws: he is a real Mexican macho, he is incapable of showing his feelings, he is not very understanding to his family, but on the other hand he makes his best to protect them and to get them close to him. This is what makes his character seem so real. Clashes between Consuelo (his older daughter) and himself are among the best moments in the film. She is tough and won't accept old fashioned values as a common law, she wants to be independent and feel free as a woman, while other females in Sanchez's house think they must obey their macho. Her struggle to get rid of family ties is a rough one, but it will lead to a final understanding with her father. This film is particularly interesting if one wants to know what it feels like to being inside a Mexican-type environment as it was some time ago, and how difficult it may be to change one's mind. Chuck Mangione's score is so powerful it only adds strength to the story as it explains hidden violence in some character's "mal de vivre". Lupita Ferrer is touching as Consuelo; pity she didn't show again such a strong presence in other movies.
8 of 11 people found this review helpful.
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