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American Me (1992)

 -  Biography | Crime | Drama  -  13 March 1992 (USA)
7.2
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 4,799 users   Metascore: 66/100
Reviews: 43 user | 16 critic | 11 from Metacritic.com

A Mexican-American Mafia kingpin is released from prison, falls in love for the first time, and grows introspective about his gangster lifestyle.

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(story), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Pedro Santana
Vira Montes ...
Esperanza Santana
Roberto Martín Márquez ...
Acha (as Robert Martin Marquez)
...
Yolanda
Joe Aubel ...
Tattoo Artist
Rob Garrett ...
Zoot Riot Bystander
...
Young Sailor
Cody Glenn ...
Older Sailor
...
Police Officer
Panchito Gómez ...
Young Montoya Santana (as Panchito Gomez)
Albert Joe Medina Jr. ...
Street Mechanic
Alex Solís ...
Street Mechanic (as Alex Solis)
Raymond Amezquita ...
Abuelito
...
Young JD
...
Young Mundo
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Storyline

This epic depiction of thirty years of Chicano gang life in Los Angeles focuses on a teen named Santana who, with his friends Mundo and the Caucasian-but-acting-Hispanic J.D., form their own gang and are soon arrested for a break-in. Santana gets into trouble again and goes straight from reform school to prison, spending eighteen year there, and becoming leader of a powerful gang, both inside and outside the prison, while there. When he is finally released, he tries to make sense of the violence in his life, in a world much changed from when last he was in it. Written by Gary Dickerson <slug@mail.utexas.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

In prison they are the law. On the streets they are the power.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong violence and sensuality, and for language and drug content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

13 March 1992 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Sans rémission  »

Box Office

Budget:

$16,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$13,086,430 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Most of the extras who were dressed as prisoners quit after the first day of filming. They were kept in a gated area next to an open sewer and had to ask guards to use the bathroom. Guards are used to ignoring prisoners, so they mostly ignored extras dressed as prisoners. They weren't given enough water and lunch wasn't served until late in the day. Conditions slightly improved on the second day, but on the third and final day of filming at Folsom Prison there were about 25 of the 200 that showed up on the first day. See more »

Goofs

When the Mexican inmates are walking up with the mop and bucket to assassinate the African-American inmate, it shows the African-American inmate laying in just a t-shirt on his bed and in the next scene after hes caught on fire he's wearing his long sleeve button up. See more »

Quotes

Young Montoya Santana: [Mundo is being devoted into the gang] Come on, give me your hand. You know what, ese, White Fence, Maravilla, Lomita, they've been around here longer than us, you know. It's cool. We've got our own clika, strong clika. Finally getting into our own, gaining respect.
Young JD: Our clika, our barrio, our family - that's all we got, ese.
Young Mundo: Simon.
Young JD: When we were kids, belonging felt good. But having respect, that feels even better.
Young Montoya Santana: Cause La Primera lives through us. It gives to us. It is us. We make it, carnal, ...
[...]
See more »

Connections

References The Hard Way (1943) See more »

Soundtracks

Corazon Corazon
Written by José Alfredo Jiménez (as Jose Alfredo Jiminez)
Performed by Mariachi Soul de Mexico
See more »

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User Reviews

the greatest description of gang and prison life
12 February 2004 | by (New York, NY) – See all my reviews

this had the right amount of story, realism, and a great ending. people say it's too violent, but it's a prison movie it has to be violent, because prison is not sweet. Edward James Olmos is not only brave for doing this movie with actual prisoners and gang members, but he was great at depicting what happens to people when they get involved in a gang and do not do what the gang leader says, because when they tell you to kill someone, that person is going to get killed. either he goes down by your hands, or you end up getting killed with him. one of my favorite movies, i give it a 10/10


16 of 18 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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