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El Mariachi (1992)

El mariachi (original title)
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A traveling mariachi is mistaken for a murderous criminal and must hide from a gang bent on killing him.


7 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Consuelo Gómez ...
Jaime de Hoyos ...
Bigotón (as Jaime De Hoyos)
Peter Marquardt ...
Reinol Martinez ...
Ramiro Gómez ...
Cantinero (as Ramiro Gomez)
Jesús López ...
Viejo Clerk (as Jesus Lopez)
Luis Baró ...
Domino's Assistant (as Luis Baro)
Oscar Fabila ...
The Boy
Poncho Ramón ...
Azul's Rat (as Poncho Ramon)
Fernando Martínez ...
Azul's Rat (as Fernando Martinez)
Manuel Acosta ...
Walter Vargas ...
Roberto Martinez ...
Virgen Delgado ...
Female Bodyguard


El Mariachi just wants to play his guitar and carry on the family tradition. Unfortunately, the town he tries to find work in has another visitor...a killer who carries his guns in a guitar case. The drug lord and his henchmen mistake El Mariachi for the killer, Azul, and chase him around town trying to kill him and get his guitar case. Written by Josh Pasnak <chainsaw@intouch.bc.ca>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

death | mariachi | guitar | assassin | gun | See All (257) »


With a guitar in his hand and a price on his head, he wasn't looking for trouble...but trouble came looking for him. See more »


Action | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

26 February 1993 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El Mariachi  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$7,000 (estimated)


$2,040,920 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


This film initially cost $7000 to make. Director Robert Rodriguez raised $3,000 of the $7,000 by volunteering to be a human "laboratory rat". He was used to test a cholesterol reducing drug. Paid $100 a day for 30 days, he wrote most of the script while locked in the lab. Peter Marquardt was a fellow "rat", but could not speak Spanish. He delivered his lines from card held in his hand or out of shot. Most of the $7,000 was spent on film for the camera. The version seen in most cinemas has had approximately $1 million of post-production work and promotion behind it. See more »


Fairly early in the movie, Azul insists he only killed six of Moco's men, while Moco insists ten and the other four are credited to El Mariachi. Actually, Azul is responsible for the death seven of the men (the three hitmen in the opening, four in the bar) and Mariachi is responsible for three (two in the truck, one beside, leaving one unconscious). See more »


[first lines]
Mauricio: Good morning, Azul. Know who this is?
See more »

Crazy Credits

In the beginning credits, Robert Rodriguez is listed as the editor. In the ending credits he gets sole credit for additional editing. See more »


Referenced in The Quick and the Undead (2006) See more »


Mariachi Tecnologia
Written and Performed by Nestor Fajardo
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Still amazes me
29 August 2002 | by (Järvenpää, Finland) – See all my reviews

I just did myself a big favor and bought "El Mariachi/Desperado" double DVD and even though I've seen both of these timeless classics before especially this one keeps on amazing me. Obviously it's rather easy to make a good, solid action movie when you got the talent and huge quantities of money to spend on it but it's a lot harder to do it without the cash and only with your talent and creativity. That's why "El Mariachi" is in many ways still the best movie of Robert Rodriguez.

The fact that someone can come up with something as gripping, cool, stylish and suspenseful as this with only a 7000 dollar budget is miraculous. "El Mariachi" is certainly one of the best action flicks I've ever seen, it's an incredible work of art from a 20+ year old lad. It doesn't have a single dull moment, every scene is a pure genius. Just look at the extremely vivid and highly clever way film has been photographed and edited to make it more exciting. One of the biggest low budget masterpieces of the movie history. Definitely 10 out of 10.

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