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Before Night Falls
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Before Night Falls (2000) More at IMDbPro »

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Before Night Falls -- Academy Award-winner Javier Bardem stars as the Cuban poet and novelist, Reynaldo Arenas, who was persecuted for his creative beliefs and his homosexuality before finally being allowed to leave Cuba in 1980 .
Before Night Falls -- Open-ended Trailer from Fine Line


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7.3/10   20,314 votes »
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Cunningham O'Keefe (written by) &
Lázaro Gómez Carriles (written by) ...
View company contact information for Before Night Falls on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
23 February 2001 (USA) See more »
Episodic look at the life of Cuban poet and novelist, Reinaldo Arenas (1943-1990), from his childhood... See more » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Nominated for Oscar. Another 18 wins & 17 nominations See more »
(107 articles)
Johnny Depp’s 10 Wildest Big-Screen Looks
 (From Variety - Film News. 18 September 2015, 10:52 AM, PDT)

Why 1980 Was the Best Year in Movie History
 (From Hitfix. 27 April 2015, 12:06 PM, PDT)

Penn Is Latest Hollywood Celeb to Take Home French Academy's Honor
 (From Alt Film Guide. 28 January 2015, 1:46 PM, PST)

User Reviews:
In my top ten of all time. See more (130 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)
Olatz López Garmendia ... Reinaldo's Mother (as Olatz Lopez Garmendia)

Giovanni Florido ... Young Reinaldo (as Giovani Florido)
Loló Navarro ... Reinaldo's Grandmother
Batan Silva ... Reinaldo's Father (as Sebastián Silva)
Carmen Beato ... Teacher
Cy Schnabel ... Smallest School Child (as Cy)
Olmo Schnabel ... Smallest School Child
Vito Maria Schnabel ... Teenage Reinaldo

Pedro Armendáriz Jr. ... Reinaldo's Grandfather (as Pedro Armendáriz)

Diego Luna ... Carlos

Lia Chapman ... Lolin

Sean Penn ... Cuco Sanchez

Jerzy Skolimowski ... Professor
Aquiles Benites ... Translator
Ewa Piaskowska ... Pretty Blonde Student

Javier Bardem ... Reinaldo Arenas

Patricia Reyes Spíndola ... María Teresa Freye de Andrade

Michael Wincott ... Heberto Zorilla Ochoa

Hector Babenco ... Virgilio Piñera

Andrea Di Stefano ... Pepe Malas
Marlene Díaz ... Woman in car #1
Olga Borayo ... Woman in car #2
Santiago Magill ... Tomas Diego
Manolo García ... Faustino
Lola Schnabel ... Girl With Keys

Ofelia Medina ... Landlady
Lois Barragán ... Woman - UNEAC (as Lois Barragan)
Eduardo Antonio ... Nightclub Singer

Stella Schnabel ... Valeria

Olivier Martinez ... Lazaro Gomez Carilles
Manuel González ... Jose Lezama Lima (as Manuel Gonzalez)

Maurice Compte ... Nicolas Abreu
Claudette Maillé ... Maria Luisa Lima (as Claudette Maille)

John Ortiz ... Juann Abreu

Vincent Laresca ... Jose Abreu

Rene Rivera ... Recruit Driver
Chanel Puertas ... Blonde on the beach
Manolo Rivero ... Royal Gay
Nemo ... Pedro the bus driver
Andrea Fassler ... French Tourist
Magda ... Santería Dancer
Julian Bucio ... Violent Soldier
Jorge Zárate ... Prosecutor (as Jorge Zaráte)

Najwa Nimri ... Fina Zorilla Ochoa
Francisco Gattorno ... Jorge Camacho (as Francisco Gatorno)

Marisol Padilla Sánchez ... Margarita Camacho (as Marisol Padilla Sanchez)
Jorge Zamora ... Kid with Kite
Noel Medina ... Policeman on beach
Jorge Zepeda ... State Security on beach
Yulian Díaz ... Teenager #1 (as Julyan Díaz)

Eduardo Arroyuelo ... Teenager #2

Antonio Zavala Kugler ... Stranger in Lenin Park
Eloy Ganuza ... State Security in Lenin Park

Khotan Fernandez ... Young Man with bird (as Khotan)
René Pereyra ... Antonio (as Rene Pereira)
Abel Woolrich ... Hungry Inmate
Mario Oliver ... Gay Inmate
Robertico Valdez ... Singing Prisoner

Johnny Depp ... Bon Bon / Lieutenant Victor
Claudio Osoria ... Guard at El Morro
Alfredo Villa ... Armando García

Diahnne Abbott ... Blanca Romero (as Diahnne Déa)
Caridad Martinez ... Dancer in the convent
Zulema Cruz ... Zulema
Annie Gil ... Blanca's Teenage Daughter
Filiberto Estrella ... Dwarf
Juan Cristóbal Murillo ... Immigration Officer (as Juan Cristobal Murillo)
Melanio Filiberto Hebra ... Man at Mariel Harbor (as Filiberto Hebra)
Matthias Ehrenberg ... Officer at Mariel Harbor (as Matthías Ehrenberg)
Jack Schnabel ... Mr. Greenberg
Esther G. Schnabel ... Mrs. Greenberg (as Esther Schnabel)
Xavier Domingo ... Death
Eric Springer ... Orderly
Jimmy Nugent ... Taxi Driver
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Benjamín Benítez ... Rudy (uncredited)

Fidel Castro ... Himself (anti-Marielito speech) (archive footage) (uncredited)

Adrian Makala ... Student (uncredited)

Directed by
Julian Schnabel 
Writing credits
Cunningham O'Keefe (written by) &
Lázaro Gómez Carriles (written by) (as Lazaro Gomez Carriles) &
Julian Schnabel (written by)

Reynaldo Arenas (memoir "Before Night Falls") (as Reinaldo Arenas)

Jana Bokova (documentary "Havana")

Produced by
Matthias Ehrenberg .... associate producer (as Matthías Ehrenberg)
Jon Kilik .... producer
Olatz López Garmendia .... executive producer (as Olatz Lopez Garmendia)
Julian Schnabel .... executive producer
Original Music by
Carter Burwell 
Cinematography by
Xavier Grobet (director of photography) (as Xavier Pérez Grobet)
Guillermo Rosas (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Michael Berenbaum 
Casting by
Monica Nordhaus 
Production Design by
Salvador Parra 
Art Direction by
Antonio Muño-Hierro  (as Antonio Muñohierro)
Set Decoration by
Laurie Friedman 
Costume Design by
María Estela Fernández  (as Mariestela Fernández)
Makeup Department
Virginia Campos .... hair stylist
Manolo García .... key hair stylist
Judi Goodman .... hair stylist
Nicki Ledermann .... makeup artist
Ana Lozano .... makeup designer
Sandra Migueli .... makeup artist
Kerrie R. Plant .... makeup artist
Production Management
Dante Aguilar .... unit manager: Mexico
Kelley Cribben .... post-production supervisor
Matthias Ehrenberg .... unit production manager (as Matthías Ehrenberg)
Pamela Jaeckle .... unit manager: US
Mike Phillips .... production supervisor
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Giselle Gurza .... second second assistant director
Yvette Gurza .... second second assistant director
Batan Silva .... first assistant director (as Sebastián Silva)
Joaquin Silva .... key second assistant director
Art Department
Pedro Alanis Alanis .... paint foreman (as Pedro Alanís)
Maite Argüelles .... art department coordinator
Israel Becerril .... leadman
Andrew Bernard .... art director: New York
Darío Carreto .... assistant to set decorator (as Darío Ramos)
Luis Figueroa .... set dresser
Adán García .... on-set painter
Héctor Gil .... on-set dresser
Rodolfo Granados .... sculpture
Jordan Jacobs .... assistant art director
César Jiménez Rodríguez .... set dresser
Christopher Laguenes Villavencio .... set dresser
Fernando López Urquijo .... greens assistant
Pedro Neri Martinez .... greens foreman
Rogelio Nobara .... assistant to set decorator (as Rogelio Nobara Tamura)
Garry Pastore .... props
Federico Nava Patiño .... construction coordinator
Celso Peña .... property master
Tomas Rodriguez Tovar .... leadman (as Tomás Rodríguez Tovar)
Jorge Rodríguez Barajas .... assistant to property master
Jorge Sainz .... drafting
Diana Subiras Alfonso .... art department consultant
Juan Pablo Garcia Tames .... set designer
Gabriel Tapia .... assistant art department coordinator (as Gabriel Tapia Ramirez)
Óscar Tapia .... assistant to property master (as Oscar Tapia)
Tatiana Valdéz .... mural painter
Dennis Horwath Vazquez .... sign painter
Heidi Ma. Villalobos .... drafting (as Heidi Villalobos Maya)
Mirko von Berner .... on-set decorator (as Mirko Von Berner)
Alexander Wei .... art department coordinator: New York
Sound Department
Marko A. Costanzo .... foley artist
Jesse Ehredt .... sound recordist
Robert Fernandez .... sound re-recording mixer
Albert Gasser .... sound effects editor
Robert Hein .... supervising sound editor
Kenton Jakub .... adr editor
George A. Lara .... foley mixer
Marissa Littlefield .... ADR editor
Glen Marullo .... sound mixer (as Glenn Marullo)
Betsy Nagler .... boom operator: additional
Steven Simons .... additional sound re-recording mixer
David Wahnon .... assistant sound editor
Christian Wangler .... sound
Special Effects by
Alejandro Vázquez .... special effects coordinator: Effeccine
Visual Effects by
Randall Balsmeyer .... visual effects supervisor
Daniel Leung .... digital compositing supervisor
Matt McDonald .... digital effects artist
Camera and Electrical Department
Luis Antonio Alegría .... assistant electrician
David E. Baron .... second assistant camera: New York
Marco Polo Constandse .... video assist operator
Fernando Coria Reyes .... company grip (as Fernando Coria)
Andy Day .... gaffer: New York
Jose De Jesus .... assistant electrician (as José de Jesús Macías)
Humberto Delgado .... key grip
Javier Enríquez .... gaffer
Edgar Ambriz Espinoza .... electrician (as Edgar Ambriz)
Michael Fradianni .... electrician
Miguel Ángel García .... best boy (as Miguel Angel Garcia)
Pedro Hernández Gonzalez .... company grip (as Pedro Hernández)
Antonio Huerta .... assistant electrician
Roberto Oviedo Vargas .... company grip (as Roberto Oviedo)
Roberto Oviedo Vargas .... electrician (as Roberto Oviedo)
Raúl Palacios .... electrician
Pedro Reyes .... generator operator
Jesús Rojas .... generator operator (as Jesús Rojas Juáre)
Adrian Romero .... company grip (as Adrián Romero Ramírez)
Mauricio Rubinstein .... additional photographer
Daniel Salk .... video assist
Luis David Sansans .... steadicam operator
Miguel Ángel Sánchez .... dolly grip (as Miguel Angel Sánchez)
Marilou Vetter .... assistant camera
J. Manuel Álvarez Ambriz .... electrician (as Juan Manuel Alvarez)
Casting Department
Byron Crystal .... extras casting: New York
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Mark Burchard .... wardrobe supervisor: men
Adela Cortázar .... key wardrobe assistant
Adolfo Cruz Martínez .... wardrobe assistant
María de Jesús Lima .... wardrobe assistant
Gabriela Fernandez .... wardrobe coordinator (as Gabriela Fernández Suárez)
Zeferino Gutierrez .... wardrobe assistant (as Zeferino Gutiérrez Hernández)
Carlos 'Pollo' Munguia .... wardrobe assistant (as Carlos Munguía)
Lupita Peckinpah .... key wardrobe assistant (as Guadalupe Peckinpah)
Autumn Saville .... costume shopper: New York
Editorial Department
Craig Cobb .... associate editor
Fred Heid .... color timer
Samara Levenstein .... assistant editor
Chris Patterson .... first assistant editor
Joe Violante .... dailies advisor
John Dowdell .... hd colorist (uncredited)
David Hamme .... assistant colorist (uncredited)
Sandra Nash .... assistant editor (uncredited)
Music Department
Laurie Anderson .... composer: additional music
Carter Burwell .... conductor
Carter Burwell .... orchestrator
Susan Jacobs .... music supervisor
Steve Kasow .... assistant music editor
Todd Kasow .... music editor
Olatz López Garmendia .... music supervisor (as Olatz Lopez Garmendia)
Sandra Park .... music contractor
Dean Parker .... music copyist
Lou Reed .... composer: additional music
Transportation Department
Aguilar Mario Alberto .... picture car assistant
Efraín Alfaro .... driver (as Efraín Alfaro Ramírez)
Alejandro 'Ronco' Arroyo .... transportation captain (as Alejandro Arroyo Labra)
Ernesto Avila Gutiérrez .... driver
Enrique Cetina Burgos .... driver
José Cruz .... driver (as José Cruz Garduño)
José de Jesús Macías .... driver
Rodrigo de la Cruz .... picture car assistant
Raúl García Esquivel .... picture car coordinator
Humberto Herrera Rodríguez .... driver
Francisco Morales .... driver (as Francisco Moreno Morales)
Juan Manuel Moreno Morales .... transportation coordinator
Eduardo Márquez .... driver (as Eduardo Marquez Acevedo)
Francisco Paredes .... picture car assistant
Braulio Piedra .... driver (as Braulio Piedra González)
Angel Ruíz Téllez .... driver
Tomás Tapia .... driver (as Tomás Tapia Cruz)
Gustavo Vallejo .... driver (as Gustavo Vallejo Navarette)
René Velasquez Vasquez .... driver
Other crew
Alfredo Aguilar .... catering assistant
Ana Ballesteros .... caterer
David F. Bianculli .... production assistant
Liza Bigger .... production assistant
Juana Bocanegra .... delegate: ANDA (as Juana Bocanegra Colín)
Keri Bruno .... assistant: Mr. Schnabel, Mexico
Flavio Castilleros .... first assistant accountant
Hortensia Castro .... second assistant accountant
Adrián Cervántes .... production assistant
Sylvie Chesneau .... script supervisor
Martin Corkidi .... production assistant
Robyn J. Davis .... production coordinator: US
Lucio Fernandez .... consultant
John B. Finn .... post-production accountant
John B. Finn .... production accountant
Ofelia Flores Cárdenas .... catering assistant
Ariel García Espinoza Raymay .... dialogue coach
David García Hernández .... catering assistant
Melanio Filiberto Hebra .... dialogue coach
Jonas Hendrix .... production assistant (as Jonás Hendrix)
Josefina Hernandez .... catering assistant (as Josefina Hernández)
Sean Hogan .... first assistant accountant
Alejandro Iturriaga .... production assistant
Jon Kilik .... presenter
Michael C. Kingsley .... set production assistant: new york
Brian Lamia .... production assistant: New York
Susana Loyo .... production secretary
G. Pekas Lozano .... production coordinator: Mexico (as Gloria 'Pekas' Lozano)
Michelle Macirella .... production office assistant
Caridad Martinez .... choreographer (as Caridad Martínez Menocal)
Isabel Martinez .... production accountant (as Isabel Martínez)
Monica Nordhaus .... assistant: Mr. Schnabel, New York
Brian O'Shea .... world sales executive
Estéban Pérez López .... talent payments
Héctor Pérez .... catering assistant
Rafael Pérez .... production assistant
Evangelina Resendiz Montalvo .... unit doctor (as Dra. Evangelina Resendiz)
Rafael Reyes .... utility stand-in
Rubén Rosales Roldán .... catering assistant
Luis Ruiz .... production assistant
Diego Sandoval .... location manager
Pedro Sandoval .... assistant location manager
Josh Schneider .... accountant
Fernando Solis .... catering assistant
Steve Solomon .... animal trainer
Armando Suárez Cobián .... dialogue coach (as Armando Suárez-Cobián)
Azucena Tiburcio .... catering assistant
Eduardo Téllez Cisnero .... utility stand-in
Gwenn Williams .... assistant: Mr. Schnabel, New York
Jorge Pupo .... spanish dialogue (uncredited)
Laurie Anderson .... special thanks
Cydney Cort .... special thanks
Brian Eno .... special thanks
Eloy Ganuza .... special thanks
Lázaro Gómez Carriles .... dedicatee
Dennis Hopper .... special thanks
Orlando Jiménez Leal .... special thanks
Lou Reed .... special thanks

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Antes que anochezca" - USA (Spanish title)
See more »
Rated R for strong sexual content, some language and brief violence
133 min | South Korea:123 min
Color (Technicolor)
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Argentina:16 | Australia:MA | Canada:14A (Alberta) | Canada:18A (British Columbia) | Canada:PA (Manitoba) | Canada:14 (Nova Scotia) | Canada:14A (Ontario - 2006) | Canada:AA (Ontario) | Finland:K-15 (2007) (self applied) (TV rating) | Finland:K-18 (2006) (self applied) (TV rating) | France:U | Ireland:15 | New Zealand:R13 | Peru:18 | Portugal:M/16 | Russia:18+ | Singapore:R(A) | South Korea:15 (cut) | Spain:13 | Sweden:11 | Switzerland:16 (canton of Geneva) | Switzerland:16 (canton of Vaud) | UK:15 (cut) | UK:15 (uncut, 2011) | USA:R
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Set in Cuba, the film was made entirely in Mexico, with Veracruz doubling as Havana. Julian Schnabel said the crew was so pleasant to work with that, if he was making a film in the arctic, he would use a Mexican crew.See more »
Reinaldo Arenas:What do you want?
Cuban Police Officer:What do I want... First of all, I want Carlos to frisk this guy.
Reinaldo Arenas:But he's not even dressed.
Police Officer:What's your name?
Reinaldo Arenas:My name? Franz Kafka.
Police Officer:Hm. You think I am ignorant?
[Reinaldo shakes his head]
Police Officer:Have any of you ever heard of a Camp called La Isla de Joventud?
[Everyone declines]
Police Officer:Then maybe you can tell me, when's the last time you took it up your ass.
See more »
Movie Connections:
Tu VerasSee more »


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35 out of 52 people found the following review useful.
In my top ten of all time., 21 August 2001

BEFORE NIGHT FALLS, directed by Julian Schnabel is the best movie made since SCHINDLER'S LIST, and just might surpass it.

There is hardly anything I would change about this movie, it is in my mind as perfect as they could have made it. The only thing that could have been better was going deeper into Bardem's character, but I don't think that they really needed to, because like in OUT OF AFRICA, the character is not gone into very deeply, but the performance of Meryl Streep, or in this case Javier Bardem makes you feel like you know Arenas. The tiniest nuance is played out beautifully by Bardem, who had to learn Cuban Spanish and English with a cuban accent as well as gain a lot of weight, and probably hours of thought put into his performance.

The writing is amazing, going from one event to the other, more about the author and what happens around him than an actual basic plotline. The music is terrific and well chosen, and Burwell's original score is the best original music in film history. The cinematography is innovative and excellent, audiences have seen few examples of the photography used in this film.

And to top it all off, Julian Schanbel does a perfect job of directing, showing Arenas's life with a beautiful new narrative technique, while at the same time showing the contrast of the Revolution and it's events and the beautiful Cuban country. As in the memoir by Arenas, the film is seen through Arenas's eyes, and it is like the whole world is gay, in a sense, and it's fabulous. I also love how when showing the documentary footage, and Bardem read excerpts of Arenas's writing, it was spoken in Spanish, being true to the author's work, while the beautiful Burwell music played.

Granted, this film is not for everyone, in fact I expect ninety percent of people to detest it, but to me, it is an amazing movie that is one of the few to get a ten out of ten from myself.

Absolutely fabulous, but if you like a basic, clear plotline with rising events, climactic end, action, and humour that comes out as jokes and not just funny situations and such, you won't like it. In fact, as I said, I expect most people reading this not to like it, but to me, it may be in my top five, should've won best picture.

Was the above review useful to you?
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