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El Norte (1983)

7.8
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 3,222 users   Metascore: 67/100
Reviews: 44 user | 25 critic | 5 from Metacritic.com

Mayan Indian peasants, tired of being thought of as nothing more than "brazos fuertes" ("strong arms", i.e., manual laborers) and organizing in an effort to improve their lot in life, are ... See full summary »

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Title: El Norte (1983)

El Norte (1983) on IMDb 7.8/10

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ernesto Gómez Cruz ...
Arturo
...
Enrique
Zaide Silvia Gutiérrez ...
Rosa
Alicia del Lago ...
Lupe
...
Informer
Jose Martin Ruano ...
Foreman
Stella Quan ...
Josefita
Heraclio Zepeda ...
Pedro (as Eraclio Zapeda)
Emilio Gomez Ozuna ...
Luis
Daniel Lemus Valenzuela ...
Encarnacion
Rodrigo Puebla ...
El Puma the Soldier
Yosahandi Navarrete Quan ...
Josefita's Daughter
Rodolfo De Alexandre ...
Ramon
Emilio Del Haro ...
Truck Driver
Jorge Moreno ...
Old Man on Bus
Edit

Storyline

Mayan Indian peasants, tired of being thought of as nothing more than "brazos fuertes" ("strong arms", i.e., manual laborers) and organizing in an effort to improve their lot in life, are discovered by the Guatemalan army. After the army destroys their village and family, a brother and sister, teenagers who just barely escaped the massacre, decide they must flee to "El Norte" ("the North", i.e., the USA). After receiving clandestine help from friends and humorous advice from a veteran immigrant on strategies for traveling through Mexico, they make their way by truck, bus and other means to Los Angeles, where they try to make a new life as young, uneducated, and illegal immigrants. Written by Ed Cannon <ecannon@mail.utexas.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The magical film that reveals the world between the dream and the reality


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

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Language:

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Release Date:

27 January 1984 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El Norte  »

Filming Locations:

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Company Credits

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Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Roger Ebert noted in his review that Zaide Silvia Gutiérrez is terrified of rats in real life, but insisted that the filmmakers use actual (domesticated and trained) rats for the scene where she goes through an underground tunnel to reach the U.S. See more »

Goofs

When Enrique sees that Rosa has died, for a couple seconds we still see her breathing. See more »

Quotes

Border patrol officer 1: [to Enrique and Rosa in Spanish] Do you know how to read and write?
Rosa Xuncax: [to Enrique in Mayan] Why does he want to know that?
Enrique Xuncax: [to Rosa in Mayan] I don't know, but I think it's a trick. We'd better lie.
Border patrol officer 2: What are they saying?
Border patrol officer 1: I don't know. They're not speaking Spanish. They must be speaking some kind of Indian language.
Border patrol officer 2: Well, what the fuck good are you?
Enrique Xuncax: [to the officer in Spanish] No, we can't read or write.
Border patrol officer 1: They don't know how to read and write.
Border patrol officer 2: Well, that's some great system you got there.
Border patrol officer 1: Okay.
[...]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Z Channel: A Magnificent Obsession (2004) See more »

Soundtracks

3rd Movement from Symphony No.4
Written by Gustav Mahler
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User Reviews

 
¡Viva El Norte! my first picture as an actor.
1 September 1999 | by (México, City) – See all my reviews

Fifteen years ago, the indigenous people in Guatemala, were living a cruel extermination that forced them to flee toward Mexico and the United States. This exodus lasted a decade and half a million Guatemalans made the journey to America seeking for asylum and refuge.

In that time, a young Chicano film maker, full of noble idealism,honesty,and with no more resources but his immense talent to tell stories, put his eyes in this tragedy and made the most beautiful epic poem ever filmed about our indigenous nations: El Norte, a picture that gave voice to those that don´t have it.

With El Norte, the spectators of that time, became aware, in slambang, of a reality that have been communicated to them mostly through the press, but wich they had never confronted in such hard and frontal manner.

And in some way, El Norte became a powerfull fighting element. Grew an audience, searched audiences, left the theatres to tell its truth. Got into the schools, universities, into film festivals, and in every forum that wanted to hear it, and it´s message was founding echo in the spectators identifyed with the story of the lost paradise of all the poor of the world in which, Rosa and Enrique represent millions of young people of any color and continent, starving for security and freedom, those that every day start the search of the lost paradise through hell.

Fifteen years had gone by since the time we made this film, and unfortunately, the story that has been told in El Norte, will have to be told for a long time. We, the latinamericans, are in deep debt with Anna Thomas and Gregory Nava. Thank you for making, from this tragedy a masterpice.

Some say that a poem never won a workers strike; this may be true, but it is also true that some poems had helped us to keep the faith, and as long as you have faith, you have not been defeated.

And if you don´t belive me, ask via internet to subcomandante Marcos, who has been fighting five years in Chiapas, México, for the indigenous rigths, with no weapon other than his word. And by the way, in many of the towns El Norte was filmed. We thank the people who are helping preserve today our story in order to be shown to the future generations.


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DVD of El Norte coming Elnortefan
Meaning of the final scene? ladynata
Crossing the border-who helps them?? redvespagirl
When... when will it hit DVD? paulvinny
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