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The Motorcycle Diaries (2004)
"Diarios de motocicleta" (original title)

7.9
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Ratings: 7.9/10 from 72,150 users   Metascore: 75/100
Reviews: 291 user | 187 critic | 37 from Metacritic.com

The dramatization of a motorcycle road trip Che Guevara went on in his youth that showed him his life's calling.

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Won 1 Oscar. Another 33 wins & 43 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Mercedes Morán ...
Celia de la Serna (Argentina)
Jean Pierre Noher ...
Ernesto Guevara Lynch (Argentina) (as Jean-Pierre Noher)
Lucas Oro ...
Roberto Guevara (Argentina)
Marina Glezer ...
Celita Guevara (Argentina)
Sofia Bertolotto ...
Ana María Guevara (Argentina) (as Sofía Bertolotto)
Franco Solazzi ...
Juan Martín Guevara (Argentina)
Ricardo Díaz Mourelle ...
Uncle Jorge (Argentina) (as Ricardo Diaz Mourelle)
Sergio Boris ...
Young Traveler (Argentina)
Daniel Cargieman ...
Young Traveler (Argentina) (as Daniel Kargieman)
Diego Giorzi ...
Rodolfo (Argentina)
Facundo Espinosa ...
Tomás Granado (Argentina)
Matias Gomez ...
Kid (Argentina) (as Matías Gómez)
Diego Treu ...
Kid (Argentina)
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Storyline

In 1952, twenty-three year old medical student Ernesto Guevara de la Serna - Fuser to his friends and later better known as 'Ernesto Che Guevara' - one semester away from graduation, decides to postpone his last semester to accompany his twenty-nine year old biochemist friend 'Alberto Granado' - Mial to his friends - on his four month, 8,000 km long dream motorcycle trip throughout South America starting from their home in Buenos Aires. Their quest is to see things they've only read about in books about the continent on which they live, and to finish that quest on Alberto's thirtieth birthday on the other side of the continent in the Guajira Peninsula in Venezuela. Not all on this trip goes according to their rough plan due to a broken down motorbike, a continual lack of money (they often stretching the truth to gain the favor of a variety of strangers to help them), arguments between the two in their frequent isolation solely with each other, their raging libidos which sometimes get ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Before he changed the world the world changed him See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

| | | | | | |

Language:

| |

Release Date:

24 September 2004 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Motorcycle Diaries  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$24,918 (Hong Kong) (5 November 2004)

Gross:

$16,756,372 (USA) (11 February 2005)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

|

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When Ernesto and Alberto are in Temuco, walking with the bike and reading "El Diario Austral," Alberto complains because they misspelled his last name. El Diario Austral still exists, and it's the biggest newspaper in the Araucanía region of southern Chile. During filming in Temuco, the newspaper wrote a new article about the making of the film, and deliberately misspelled Alberto's last name again, 50 years later. See more »

Goofs

On the boat to San Pablo, Ernesto writes in a notebook with a pencil. When he gets up to look for his bag, the notebook and pencil are gone. See more »

Quotes

Ernesto Guevara de la Serna: This isn't a tale of heroic feats. It's about two lives running parallel for a while, with common aspirations and similar dreams.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The closing credits are overlaid on original photos from the real journey of Alberto and Ernesto. See more »

Connections

Featured in Wanderlust (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

Delicado
Written by Waldyr Acevedo
Interpreted by Oscar de Elia
Editorial Warner - Tamerlane Publishing Corp. (BMI)
by arrangement with Warner - Chappell Music, Inc.
See more »

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User Reviews

Humanism, Awareness, Coming of Age: The Soul of Revolution
26 November 2004 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

THE MOTORCYCLE DIARIES is certainly one of the finest films of the year

  • a daring, compassionate re-creation of the journey of two young,


well-to-do Argentinean lads who leave their privileged positions of biochemist and fourth year Medical student to follow their idea of traveling by motorcycle from their native Buenos Aires down to Patagonia, up through Chile, Peru, Colombia to Venezuela. Sounds like a light hearted Trip Movie, but instead this journey, factually made by one Ernesto (aka 'Che' and 'Fuser') Guevara de la Serna and his close friend Alberto Granado ('Chubby'), is one of the most touching and sensitive passages into self acceptance and awareness of the world as a place where equality of people is a microscopic speck of illusion that is revealed by a carefully constructed script by Jose Rivera based on the diaries of both of these men made during and after their journey. Walter Salles ("Behind the Sun", "Central Station") once again proves himself a director who can infuse his vision of a story with uncomplicated directness of approach, having the sensitivity to allow his well-chosen actors to create wholly believable, three-dimensional characters, whether the actors are the leads or simply minor roles that hold the camera's eye for seconds.

Taken as simply a movie to enjoy, THE MOTORCYCLE DIARIES is as beautiful as a National Geographic Magazine feature on the Amazon and the deserted and populated lands of South America. But given his re-creation of Che Guevara's and Alberto Granado's meaningful excursion into manhood this movie goes far beyond entertainment and enters that rarefied arena of psycho biography. Traveling on an old motorcycle, the two lads encounter hunger, accidents, lusting after women at every stop, ingratiating panhandling, and the gradual revelation of the quality of life of the indigenous peoples of South America. They are touched by the plights of the people, the people in turn love the boys, and they eventually spend three weeks living and working in a leprosarium run by the nuns, adding their knowledge of medicine to helping not only the physical needs of the lepers but finding ways to break the psychosocial ostracism that historically curses the 'unclean'. Breaking down these barriers, forming strong relationships with those tending the lepers as well as the lepers themselves, lays the seeds of 'revolution' or Change in the minds of the lads, especially Ernesto or 'Che'. The film does not begin to preach or to make the Che Guevara of Cuban militancy fame a hero: it doesn't have to, as the transformation in the mind of Che is so beautifully subtle. The journey has given him the insight that he must devote himself to changing the inequality and poverty of his America. The events that followed this Motorcycle journey are provided in voice over, black and white footage of people's faces, and a final scene in Havana at the ending of the film. No more need be said.

Gael Garcia Bernal gives an incredibly thoughtful, stunning portrayal of Che, saying so much more with his eyes, his body language (especially as he suffers through his own physical demon of asthma attacks), and his perfect embodiment of the spirit of a man who becomes enlightened by the peasants he comes to love. Bernal is already a brilliant actor and a magnetic screen presence, and if he is not nominated for an Oscar for this unique, artful role it will be a major surprise. His is a career to watch! Likewise Rodrigo de la Serna is completely immersed in his role as Alberto and shows the same quality of quiet growth as a character as the movie progresses. ALL of the many extras in this huge cast are memorable: the leper colony abounds with some of the most touching human beings ever captured on film. The camera work, the musical scoring, the obvious commitment on the part of everyone involved in this glorious picture - every aspect of THE MOTORCYCLE DIARIES is exactly right. Ten Stars for this one! In Spanish with English subtitles


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