IMDb > El Norte (1983)
El Norte
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El Norte (1983) More at IMDbPro »

Photos (See all 16 | slideshow) Videos (see all 3)
El Norte -- Mayan Indian peasants flee north to the USA after their village is destroyed by the Guatemalan army
El Norte -- Brother and sister Enrique and Rosa flee persecution at home in Guatemala and journey north, through Mexico and on to the United States, with the dream of starting a new life.

Overview

User Rating:
7.8/10   3,222 votes »
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Down 6% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Director:
Writers:
Gregory Nava (story)
Anna Thomas (writer)
Contact:
View company contact information for El Norte on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
27 January 1984 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
The magical film that reveals the world between the dream and the reality
Plot:
Mayan Indian peasants, tired of being thought of as nothing more than "brazos fuertes" ("strong arms"... See more » | Add synopsis »
Awards:
Nominated for Oscar. Another 2 wins & 1 nomination See more »
User Reviews:
Faithfully mirrors the fear and uncertainty of illegal immigrants See more (44 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)
Ernesto Gómez Cruz ... Arturo

David Villalpando ... Enrique
Zaide Silvia Gutiérrez ... Rosa
Alicia del Lago ... Lupe

Mike Gomez ... 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
Palomo Garcia ... Coyote at Bus Station
Ismael Gamez ... Jeering Slumdweller
Silverio Lujan ... Jeering Slumdweller
Socorro Velazquez ... Jeering Slumdweller

John Martin ... Border Guard Ed
Ronald G. Joseph ... Border Guard Joel (as Ron Joseph)
Abel Franco ... Raimundo
Rosario Cevellos ... Fruit Vendor

Trinidad Silva ... Monte

Lupe Ontiveros ... Nacha
Young Chung ... Mr. Chung
Gregory Enton ... Len the Restaurateur

Tony Plana ... Carlos the Bus Boy
Slavitza Yhuelo ... Model in Sweatshop
Julie Silliman ... Model in Sweatshop

Enrique Castillo ... Jorge the Dishwasher

Momo Yashima ... English Teacher
Jomarie Ward ... Helen Rogers (as Jo Marie Ward)
Loraine Shields ... Girl Who Orders Coffee

Larry Cedar ... Bruce the Waiter

Sheryl Bernstein ... Karen the Hostess

Diane Cary ... Alice Harper (as Diane Civita)
Eulalia Cardenas ... Curandera
Jules Segal ... INS Officer
Perry Page ... INS Officer
Mary Armantrout ... Nurse

George O'Hanlon Jr. ... Doctor Murphy

Bo Kane ... Lab Technician (as Bob Kane)
Pablo Velasquez ... Foreman at Construction Site
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Sergi Dagliana ... Olinto (uncredited)
Giuseppe Furia ... Requiem (uncredited)
Pado Hende ... Dilvo (uncredited)

Sean O'Kane ... Immigration Officer (uncredited)
Antonio Prester ... Bit Part (uncredited)
Sabina Vannucchi ... Rosa (uncredited)
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Directed by
Gregory Nava 
 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Gregory Nava  story
Anna Thomas  writer

Produced by
Trevor Black .... producer
Bertha Navarro .... producer
Anna Thomas .... producer
 
Original Music by
The Folkloristas 
Malecio Martinez 
Linda O'Brien 
Emil Richards 
 
Cinematography by
James Glennon 
 
Film Editing by
Betsy Blankett Milicevic  (as Betsy Blankett)
 
Casting by
Bob Morones 
 
Costume Design by
Hilary Wright 
 
Production Management
Trevor Black .... production manager: USA
Amanda Gill .... production manager: USA
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Amanda Gill .... second assistant director
Tony Ogaz .... third assistant director
 
Art Department
David Wasco .... set designer
David Wasco .... set dresser
 
Sound Department
Gregg Barbanell .... foley artist
Gregg Barbanell .... supervising sound editor
Julia Evershade .... sound editor
Arnold Finkelstein .... assistant sound editor
David Kern .... sound effects editor
Michael C. Moore .... sound designer
Michael C. Moore .... sound recordist
Richard Portman .... sound re-recording mixer
Marshall Winn .... sound editor
Robert Yerington .... sound recordist
Jerry Trent .... foley artist (uncredited)
 
Stunts
Doc D. Charbonneau .... stunts
 
Camera and Electrical Department
James Glennon .... first assistant camera: USA
James Glennon .... second assistant camera: Mexico
Chris Lombardi .... second assistant camera
Gregory Nava .... additional photographer: USA
Ronald Vidor .... camera operator: principal photography (uncredited)
 
Other crew
Mike Sowa .... digital color timer
 

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies
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Additional Details

Also Known As:
"The North" - International (English title) (literal English title)
See more »
Runtime:
141 min
Country:
Language:
Color:
Aspect Ratio:
1.78 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Certification:
Filming Locations:

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:
Continuity: The plane that taxis up to the airport building is a DC-10, but the plane seen lifting off towards Chicago is a 747.See more »
Quotes:
Jorge:Rosa... it doesn't matter!See more »
Movie Connections:
Featured in Los Angeles Plays Itself (2003)See more »
Soundtrack:
Tierra MestizaSee more »

FAQ

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
21 out of 24 people found the following review useful.
Faithfully mirrors the fear and uncertainty of illegal immigrants, 9 August 2004
Author: Howard Schumann from Vancouver, B.C.

In the 1980s, military repression and civil warfare intensified in both Guatemala and El Salvador, resulting in massacres, forced displacement, and political assassinations. Thousands left Central America to come to America, most of them illegally. Those who entered the U.S. filed for political asylum but despite the reports of murders and disappearances, barely three percent of applicants received asylum. Today, approximately half of Salvadorans and Guatemalans living in the U.S. have less than an eighth grade education and most work long hours in jobs on the low end of the pay scale and their situation makes it nearly impossible to advance or make long term plans.

Gregory Nava's 1983 Indie film El Norte describes the plight of two young Guatemalans, Enrique (David Villalpando) and his sister Rosa (Zaide Silvia Gutierrez) who face reprisals from the military after participating in a protest meeting and undertake a hazardous journey to "the north" to find a better life. The film is divided into three parts: "Arturo Xuncax", describing the circumstances that caused the family to leave Guatemala "El Coyote", detailing their hazardous journey to reach the U.S., and "El Norte", telling the story of their life in Los Angeles. While El Norte does have a strong political message, the core of the film is the relationship between Enrique and Rosa.

The hardships of the journey are told in graphic detail, especially the last test of crossing the border by crawling on their hands and knees through an abandoned sewer line populated by hordes of rats. Things seem to be bright, however, when they arrive in Los Angeles. He becomes a busboy in an upscale restaurant, she finds work as a maid in Beverly Hills, and both try to learn English in their free time. They soon find, however, that life in the U.S. is not all that it appears and their situation unravels when Enrique is reported to INS officials by a jealous employee. El Norte wears its heart on its sleeve and the film tends toward the melodramatic, but it faithfully mirrors the fear and uncertainty that illegal immigrants face each day and I can forgive its flaws and applaud the loving bond between brother and sister and the strength it produces in their lives.

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Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for El Norte (1983)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
When... when will it hit DVD? paulvinny
soundtrack sanfoor
Enrique finding Raimundo..? elchicho25
Villagers of San Pedro? mparedes17
Crossing the border-who helps them?? redvespagirl
Gregory Nava, came and peaked with 'El Norte' musicbeing
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