This epic film traces over three generations an immigrant family's trials, tribulations, tragedies and triumphs. Jose and Maria, the first generation, come to Los Angeles, meet, marry, face...
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Mousie and Sad Girl are childhood best friends in a contemporary Los Angeles poor Hispanic neighborhood. But when Sad Girl becomes pregnant by Mousie's boyfriend, a drug dealer named ... See full summary »
Based on the true life experiences of poet Jimmy Santiago Baca, the film focuses on half-brothers Paco and Cruz, and their bi-racial cousin Miklo. It opens in 1972, as the three are members... See full summary »
Kid brother Chuco (Danny De La Paz) is a sullen low-rider still caught up in the life. Despite their differences, their family bond is strong. But that bond is violently tested when rivals ... See full summary »
Danny De La Paz,
Some friends are closer than brothers, for Raymo, Alfonso and Danny that's all they know. Growing up in an L.A. barrio (neighborhood) is a daily struggle for survival all on its own. But ... See full summary »
Clifton Collins Jr.,
A young girl agrees to work in a center for girls who can't stay with their parents. She gets wrapped up in the plights of several of the girls, and tries to help them, but only gets herself into trouble with her parents and supervisor.
James Earl Jones,
Mary Stuart Masterson
This epic film traces over three generations an immigrant family's trials, tribulations, tragedies and triumphs. Jose and Maria, the first generation, come to Los Angeles, meet, marry, face deportation all in the 1930s. They establish their family in East L.A., and their children Chucho, Paco, Memo, Irene, Toni, and Jimmy deal with youth culture and the L.A. police in the 1950s. As the second generation become adults in the 1960s, the focus shifts to Jimmy, his marriage to Isabel (a Salvadorian refugee), their son, and Jimmy's journey to becoming a responsible parent. Written by
When Isabella is at the Sanchez home, we see a medium shot of Paco with a bowl of popcorn, and Memo. In front of them is a tray of taquitos. But a minute or two later, Irene brings out the same tray and sets it down on the coffee table in front of them. See more »
Everyone said the police had killed Chucho, but my mother never believed it. She knew that he was meant to die at the river. Chucho's life had been on borrowed time, but you cannot cheat fate forever. The spirit of the river had returned to claim what was rightfuly his.
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'My Family' is a compelling tale spanning three generations about a family of Mexican origin living in Los Angeles. It starts with the father of the family, Jose Sanchez (terrifically played by Jacob Vargas), making a one year journey on foot from Mexico to Los Angeles. Once there, he meets and marries the love of his life, Maria (Jennifer Lopez, in an interesting performance). After, Maria survives a tragic separation from her husband, they both settle down in Los Angeles and raise a family of six.
There is a tremendous amount of expectation here, namely because Francis Ford Coppola, who crafted arguably the most exhilarating family saga in the Godfather pictures, is an executive producer. But, My Family is nowhere near in the same league as films like 'The Godfather'. Rather, 'My Family' turns out to be a great film that could have been better. One glaring flaw is in the script written by Gregory Nava and Anna Thomas. Too often, the script relies on tragedies to stir our emotions. Consequently, the emotion presented in the film feels fake at times. Particularly, in the scenes involving Jimmy attempting to bond with his only son, Carlitos.
Despite the missteps in the film, there are many positives to draw upon. The strong performances of the cast. Jimmy Smits, in particular, dominates the film with an intense and yet affecting performance. The film hardly ever succumbs to being a standard tear-jerker or phony. Instead, the film succeeds at creating a touching and provocative portrait of a family's struggles and tribulations in a world that hardly seems just.
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