Maria Full of Grace (2004)

R  |   |  Crime, Drama  |  6 August 2004 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 29,728 users   Metascore: 87/100
Reviews: 170 user | 155 critic | 39 from

A pregnant Colombian teenager becomes a drug mule to make some desperately needed money for her family.



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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 37 wins & 32 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
María Álvarez
Virgina Ariza ...
Rodrigo Sánchez Borhorquez ...
Charles Albert Patiño ...
Wilson Guerrero ...
Johanna Andrea Mora ...
Diana Álvarez
Fabricio Suarez ...
Mateo Suarez ...
Evangelina Morales ...
Juana Guarderas ...
Female Pharmacist
John Álex Toro ...
Franklin (as Jhon Alex Toro)
Javier (as Jaime Osorio Gomez)
Lucy Díaz
Victor Macias ...
Pellet Maker


In a small village in Colombia, the pregnant seventeen years old Maria supports her family with her salary working in a floriculture. She is fired and with a total lack of perspective of finding a new job, she decides to accept the offer to work as a drug mule, flying to USA with sixty-two pellets of cocaine in her stomach. Once in New York, things do not happen as planned. Written by Stephen Bowen

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


These pellets contain heroin. Each weighs 10 grams. Each is 4.2 cm long and 1.4 cm wide. And they're on their way to New York in the stomach of a 17-year-old girl. See more »


Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for drug content and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:




| |



Release Date:

6 August 2004 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Maria Full of Grace  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$3,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$139,066 (USA) (16 July 2004)


£232,674 (UK) (1 April 2005)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The scene where Maria and Blanca return the pellets and money to the dealers in the parking lot was the last scene shot during principal photography. Filming was very difficult, because the actors playing the dealers had not rehearsed the scene in over a month and were having trouble getting into character. Threatened by the producers to abandon the scene, Director Joshua Marston eventually achieved what he needed by encouraging the actors to improvise, particularly with their blocking. During the The 77th Annual Academy Awards (2005) ceremony, the scene was played during the reading of Catalina Sandino Moreno's Best Actress nomination. See more »


After Maria gives Don Fernando the money for Lucy's family, she takes her wallet out twice. See more »


María Álvarez: What about our money?
Felipe: What about it? You two ran off with the merchandise!
María Álvarez: You have the pellets back!
Felipe: Exactly, we have them back and we don't need you anymore. You're not worth a fuck now.
See more »


Referenced in Chelsea Lately: Episode #8.110 (2014) See more »


Lo Que Venga Despues
Written and Performed by Julieta Venegas
Produced by Paco Huidobro, Julieta Venegas, Leonardo Heiblum and Jacobo Lieberman
Courtesy of BMG Entertainment Mexico S.A. de C.V.
See more »

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User Reviews

I wouldn't have to like having to make such choices
18 September 2004 | by (atlanta, ga usa) – See all my reviews

This movie was powerful, seamless. I can't think of a scene where I asked myself, why did we need that? It was even-handed. The director could have dramatized the plight of María's family more. But he didn't. I didn't think a real-life Maria would have told Lucy's sister that Lucy had died and she didn't.

I liked seeing the crowding in the house in Colombia and in the house in Queens. The customs agents weren't portrayed as stupid boobs, but rather as professionals, thus making María's plight seem more real. Don Fernando's role seemed incredibly accurate as an immigrant ombudsman. And the ending was powerful. It touched me. I will take my students to see this movie this week. (I'm a high school teacher). When will they stop producing heroin and cocaine in Colombia? As soon as we here in the United States stop shoving it up our noses.

19 of 28 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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