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Eréndira (1983)

 -  Drama  -  1 June 1984 (Mexico)
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While Erendira, a beautiful teenage girl, has a surreal mystical vision, her grandmother's house catches on fire and burns to the ground. Her grandmother holds Erendira responsible and, in ... See full summary »



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Title: Eréndira (1983)

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Grandmother Amadis
Claudia Ohana ...
Senator Onésimo Sanchez
Oliver Wehe ...
Rufus ...
Ulysses' mother
Ernesto Gómez Cruz ...
Pierre Vaneck ...
Ulysses' father
Carlos Cardán ...
Humberto Elizondo ...
Jorge Fegán ...
Army commander
Francisco Mauri ...
Truck driver
Martín Palomares ...
Salvador Garcini ...


While Erendira, a beautiful teenage girl, has a surreal mystical vision, her grandmother's house catches on fire and burns to the ground. Her grandmother holds Erendira responsible and, in order to extract restitution from the girl, forces her into prostitution. Erendira's surreal mystical experiences continue while her grandmother grows rich from exploiting her. Written by Ed Cannon <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




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Release Date:

1 June 1984 (Mexico)  »

Also Known As:

Erendira  »

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Did You Know?


Based on the story "La increíble y triste historia de la cándida Eréndira y su abuela desalmada" ("The Incredible and Sad Tale of Innocent Eréndira and Her Heartless Grandmother"), by Nobel Prize-winning Colombian novelist Gabriel García Márquez. See more »


Erendira: There was enough poison to kill a million rats.
See more »


By Pierre Dumarchais and Georges Van Parys
Performed by Germaine Montero
Éditions Pathé Marceau EMI
See more »

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User Reviews

Surreal, enigmatic, memorable film. One of my all-time favorites.
7 December 2002 | by (Seattle, Washington) – See all my reviews

I first rented this film many years ago, and was completely enthralled by it. Just recently, feeling a strange need to revisit some of the way-too-few films that I've immensely enjoyed in my lifetime, I decided to give "Erendira" another look. And I'm glad I did, as I soon discovered that even the passage of time has not in the least dulled the shine of this film.

The story is about a teenaged girl (Erendira, played remarkably by Claudia O'hana - in some respects she resembles Winona Ryder!) who accidentally burns down her grandmother's mansion after which the grandmother, played downright hypnotically by Irene Papas, forces the girl into a life of prostitution on the road to repay the damages.

The viewing is at once fascinating and compelling - though, inspite of the basic premise, which deals with prostitution, is tastefully void of gratuitous steamy sexual content. The story revolves more around the interactions between the girl and her grandmother, and the various other colorful characters with whom they come into contact on their sojourn - which, by the way, is in the rough and tumble part of rural Mexico.

The film is very atmospheric, arrestingly enigmatic with a decided dreamlike quality. It sometimes borders on the bizarre, but not to the point of, say, a David Lynch film. It's also worth mentioning that the film is very allegorical in nature, read the comments from previous viewers below...

Often in the background you hear the sounds of a lone accordion, quiet and melancholy, adding just the right musical accents to highlight the Mexican setting. The cinematography of the rural places, many of which are in the desert, is quite superb.

The film moves at a nice pace, neither too fast nor too slow, and after every scene I felt I had to rewind the tape and play it over again, just because it makes you want to do that. For me anyway, it really is that compelling.

Hopefully you will see the film in its Spanish language version, with subtitles. I studied Spanish in high school as well as in college, and I was happy to be able to understand much of the dialogue. Por ejemplo: "El mundo no es tan grande como pensaba." ("The world's not as big as I thought" - i.e., It's a small world.)

This film somehow reminds me of stumbling upon a dusty old bottle of vintage wine, which, upon drinking, is immensely satisfying, however, you are left with some sadness upon realizing that there aren't more bottles just like this one.

10 of 11 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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