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A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints
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A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints (2006) More at IMDbPro »

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A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints -- The movie is a coming-of-age drama about a boy growing up in Astoria, N.Y., during the 1980s. As his friends end up dead, on drugs or in prison, he comes to believe he has been saved from their fate by various so-called saints.
A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints -- The movie is a coming-of-age drama about a boy growing up in Astoria, N.Y., during the 1980s. As his friends end up dead, on drugs or in prison, he comes to believe he has been saved from their fate by various so-called saints.
A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints -- The movie is a coming-of-age drama about a boy growing up in Astoria, N.Y., during the 1980s. As his friends end up dead, on drugs or in prison, he comes to believe he has been saved from their fate by various so-called saints.
A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints -- The movie is a coming-of-age drama about a boy growing up in Astoria, N.Y., during the 1980s. As his friends end up dead, on drugs or in prison, he comes to believe he has been saved from their fate by various so-called saints.


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Dito Montiel (book)
Dito Montiel (written by)
View company contact information for A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
13 October 2006 (USA) See more »
Queens, New York, 1986. Sometimes the only way forward, is back. See more »
The movie is a coming-of-age drama about a boy growing up in Astoria, N.Y., during the 1980s. As his friends end up dead, on drugs or in prison, he comes to believe he has been saved from their fate by various so-called saints. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
8 wins & 8 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
Emotionally honest See more (82 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Dianne Wiest ... Flori

Robert Downey Jr. ... Dito

Shia LaBeouf ... Young Dito

Melonie Diaz ... Young Laurie

Laila Liliana Garro ... Diane (as Julia Garro)
Eleonore Hendricks ... Jenny

Adam Scarimbolo ... Guiseppe

Peter Anthony Tambakis ... Young Nerf (as Peter Tambakis)

Channing Tatum ... Young Antonio
Anthony Tirado ... Street Corner Puerto Rican (credit only)
Erick Rosado ... Puerto Rican Van Driver
Steve Payne ... Beach Chair Guy (as Steven Payne)

Chazz Palminteri ... Monty

Tibor Feldman ... Teacher

Martin Compston ... Mike O'Shea
Marc Castle ... Drunken Man in Subway
Steven Randazzo ... Token Clerk (as Stephen Randazzo)

George DiCenzo ... Uncle George (as George Di Cenzo)

Olga Merediz ... Aunt Mary
Teresa Kelsey ... Newscaster (as Teresa Anne Kelsey)
Sammy Rhee ... Korean Shop Owner

Jermel Wilson ... Yup Yup

Michael Rivera ... Reaper

David Castro ... Reaper's Little Brother

Federico Castelluccio ... Antonio's Father

Anthony DeSando ... Frank the Dog Walker (as Anthony de Sando)

Scott Michael Campbell ... Nerf (as Scott Campbell)

Rosario Dawson ... Laurie

Kyle Benitez ... Laurie's Son
Iraida Polanco ... Old Woman

Gilbert Cruz ... Queensbridge Bodega Man

Eric Roberts ... Antonio

Chance Kelly ... Prison Guard
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Angela Frye ... Woman in Subway Station (uncredited)

Yetta Gottesman ... Prison Visitor (uncredited)
Al Marz ... Street Corner Puerto Rican (uncredited)

Chris Nuñez ... Gang Member (uncredited)

Jeff Skowron ... Bookstore Clerk (uncredited)

E. Austin Valentine ... Very young Dito (uncredited)

Directed by
Dito Montiel 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Dito Montiel  book
Dito Montiel  written by

Produced by
Rene Bastian .... co-producer
Lucy Cooper .... line producer
Charlie Corwin .... producer
Robert Downey Jr. .... co-producer
Jonathan Elias .... co-producer
Alex Francis .... associate producer
Amanda Mackey Johnson .... executive producer (as Amanda Mackey)
Clara Markowicz .... producer
Linda Moran .... co-producer
Bobby Sager .... executive producer
Peter Sahagen .... executive producer
Sting .... executive producer
Trudie Styler .... producer
Travis Swords .... producer
Original Music by
Jonathan Elias 
Cinematography by
Eric Gautier (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Jake Pushinsky 
Christopher Tellefsen 
Casting by
Melissa Chusid 
Amanda Mackey Johnson  (as Amanda Mackey)
Cathy Sandrich  (as Cathy Sandrich Gelford)
Production Design by
Jody Asnes 
Set Decoration by
Cherish M. Hale  (as Cherish Magennis Hale)
Costume Design by
Sandra Hernandez 
Makeup Department
Mary Cooke .... key hair stylist (as Mary Cook)
Suzanne DeSimone .... additional makeup artist (as Suzanne D. De Simone)
Joseph Farulla .... additional makeup artist (as Joe Farulla)
Linda Grimes .... key makeup artist
Michael Laudati .... additional makeup artist
Dionne Pitsikoulis .... makeup artist
Eileen Tersago .... additional hair stylist
Production Management
Nicola Westermann .... unit production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Jason Graham .... second assistant director
Urs Hirschbiegel .... first assistant director
Anthony Ripoli .... second unit director
Justin Ritson .... second second assistant director
Nan Sandle .... second second assistant director (as Nan Marie Sandle)
Art Department
Sarah Berney .... scenic artist (as Sarah L. Berney)
Benji Cox .... art department assistant (as Benjamin K. Cox)
Benjamin Craig .... scenic artist
Colin Eletto .... art department assistant
Shannon Finnerty .... assistant property master
Jessioca Gonzalez .... art department intern
Nora Killoran .... additional set dresser
Lianir Lopez .... art production assistant
Christina Madry .... art intern
David Moriarty .... scenic artist
Hannah Newman .... construction assistant
Andy Pan .... lead man
Mike Romano .... set carpenter
Jeremy Rosenstein .... art department assistant
Kyle Salvatore .... on-set dresser
Nicole M. Solis .... scenic artist (as Nicole Solis)
Joshua Visser .... construction coordinator (as Joshua M. Visser)
Bentley Wood .... property master
Derek J.W. Wybourn .... assistant property master
Marian Ziola-Stoeffelmeier .... scenic artist
Sound Department
Leslie Bloom .... foley artist
Pam DeMetruis-Thomas .... adr editor (as Pam De Metruis-Thomas)
Eugene Gearty .... sound editor
John Gutierrez .... boom operator
Paul Hsu .... sound re-recording mixer
Paul Hsu .... supervising sound editor
Charles R. Hunt .... sound mixer (as Charles Hunt)
Jesse Malings .... sound mixer
Branka Mrkic .... dialogue editor (as Branka Mrkic-Tana)
Beauxregard Neylen .... assistant adr engineer
Beauxregard Neylen .... assistant foley engineer
Alex Raspa .... adr engineer
Alex Raspa .... foley engineer
Chris Rich .... sound facility supervisor
Lila Yomtoob .... assistant sound editor
Visual Effects by
Keith Yurevitz .... visual effects
Roy Farfel .... stunt coordinator
Camera and Electrical Department
Aida Artieda .... additional electrician
Hugo Bonilla .... generator operator
Ethan Borsuk .... second assistant camera
Luis Colon .... grip
Katie Dainson .... additional second assistant camera
Christopher DelSordo .... additional second assistant camera (as Chris Del Sordo)
Billy Dickson .... additional photographer
Pedro Diez .... additional grip
Nicole Emmons .... additional electrician
Jack Foster .... best boy grip
Avra Fox-Lerner .... additional grip
John Frisbie .... third electrician
Andrew Greve .... additional electrician
Melissa Guimaraes .... key grip
Nick Haines-Stiles .... additional grip
David Harges .... gaffer (as David Lee Harges)
Steve Huber .... additional photographer
Gregory Hurcomb .... additional electrician
Daniel Kubick .... additional electrician (as Daniel Kubicek)
Nina Kuhn .... additional electrician
Marcus Lehmann .... grip
Parris Mayhew .... camera operator
Smokey Nelson .... gaffer: additional photography
Lisa Origlieri .... camera loader
Joseph Paolini .... third grip
Andrij Parekh .... additional photographer
Chris Reynolds .... first assistant camera
Francis Spieldenner .... additional first assistant camera
Jake Sumner .... camera intern
Walter Thomson .... still photographer
Fernando Vallejo .... camera intern
Casting Department
Lori Eastside .... extras casting
Avy Kaufman .... additional casting
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Ngina Bowen .... wardrobe supervisor
Leslie Fry .... wardrobe intern
Whitney Kyles .... assistant costume designer
Christina Madry .... wardrobe intern
Evelyn Mejia .... wardrobe intern
Yvette Stapleton .... key costumer (as Yvette E. Stapleton)
David F. Zambrana .... assistant costume designer
Editorial Department
Adam Folk .... post-production coordinator
Vaughan Killin .... color timer
William Lehman .... assistant editor
Anthony Ripoli .... assistant editor
Larry Schmitt .... on-line editor
Music Department
Jim Black .... music clearances: Clearsongs Inc.
Jimmy Haun .... additional scoring
Vincenzo LoRusso .... lead music mixer
Vincenzo LoRusso .... music recording engineer
Nathaniel Morgan .... music recording engineer
David Wittman .... additional scoring
Transportation Department
John McMorrow .... driver
Timothy Paustian .... transportation captain (as Timothy J. Paustian)
Other crew
Matthew Amenta .... set production assistant (as Matthew C. Amenta)
Victoria Asher .... set intern
Luches Banks .... set production assistant
Eli Barach .... office intern
Anna Bosco .... accountant: JFA Inc.
Steve Boyle .... accountant: JFA Inc.
Alayne Brady .... office intern
Inna Braude .... assistant: Kingu Films
Emerson E. Bruns .... production legal counsel
Linda Carbone .... production executive: Kingu Films, New York
Jeff Caron .... location manager
Amyjoy Clark .... additional production assistant: first team
Daniel Coss .... location manager: New York
Alison Davis .... production secretary (as Alison M. Davis)
Patricia de Paula .... production coordinator
Payton Dunham .... assistant location manager: preparation
Bailey Ertel .... set production assistant
Jason Fesel .... set production assistant (as Jason Fredrick Fesel)
John B. Finn .... accountant: JPA Inc. (as John Finn)
Jessica Flores .... office intern (as Jessica J. Flores)
Stacy Frankel .... assistant: Original Media
Cliff Fuller .... production office coordinator
Rebecca Fulton .... script supervisor
Ish Goldstein .... set production assistant
Wilson Green .... set production assistant
Wayne Han .... production assistant
Sebastian Iervolino .... set intern
Pino Insegno .... voice dubbing: Robert Downey Jr
Sondra James .... loop group coordinator
Markus Janner .... titles & opticals: Duart Digital
Theis Jessen .... office production assistant
John Kaylin .... dubbing producer
Margaret Koschik .... location assistant (as Meg Koschik)
Lianir Lopez .... art production assistant
Theresa Lowrey .... assistant: Trudie Styler
Christine McAndrews .... production executive: Kingu Films, New York
Watari Nishida .... set production assistant
Shane O'Dell .... office manager: Belladonna
Ray Parada .... additional footage
Alyson Perlongo .... assistant: Original Media
Melissa Pfluger .... craft service: Kitchen 306 Inc.
Christina Prudenti .... craft service: Kitchen 306 Inc.
Jimmy Rich .... assistant: Robert Downey Jr.
Neil Ruddy .... weapons specialist
Nan Sandle .... production assistant: first team (as Nan Marie Sandle)
Clarence Sharpe .... key production assistant
Joleen Small .... office intern
Jesse Spellman .... set production assistant (as Jesse Spellman III)
Greg Staley .... additional set production assistant
Cordelia Stephens .... clearances and product placement
James P. Stephens .... assistant to director
Anita Sumner .... senior production executive: Kingu Films, London
Olivia Vesey .... set intern
T.G. Wilkinson .... set intern (as Tom Wilkinson)
Keith Yurevitz .... titles & opticals: Duart Digital
Alexander Zweig .... assistant location manager (as Alex Zweig)
Ed Harris .... special thanks
Anne Hubbell .... thanks
Craig Kestel .... special thanks
Kenneth Shiffrin .... special thanks (as Kenneth Schiffrin)

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Rated R for pervasive language, some violence, sexuality, and drug use
100 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

Final film of George DiCenzo.See more »
Anachronisms: When Dito and Mike are walking to Frank's for the first time they walk by Mamas Food Shop, which wasn't established until 1995.See more »
Young Nerf:Which one of you, which one of you is gonna suck me off first?
[points at each one]
Young Nerf:You? You?
Diane:What you got? You got nothin'!
Young Antonio:[flashes them] How about that?
Jenny:[laughing] No, I like it! It's cute - I like it.
See more »
Movie Connections:
References Asteroids (1979) (VG)See more »
New York GrooveSee more »


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73 out of 77 people found the following review useful.
Emotionally honest, 20 November 2006
Author: Paul Martin from Melbourne, Australia

What kind of writer reveals his troubled childhood, then directs a semi-autobiographical film about it, using a character with his own name? Bold, foolish or maybe both, that's exactly what Dito Montiel did.

Reminiscent of Larry Clark's Kids in Manhattan, it depicts adolescents growing up in a tough neighbourhood, in the borough of Queens. For some of these youth, the dangers lay not just on the streets, but also in their own homes. Dito only knew he had to get away.

At first the film is a little difficult to watch visually – the editing and hand-held camera are abrupt. As the film develops, and the story shifts into the present, it becomes evident that this was a deliberate device to depict the nature of recollection. As Dito makes the journey across the continent to visit the ill father he hasn't seen in 15 years, a montage of childhood memories flood his mind.

A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints at times is not an easy film to watch but is more accessible than Kids. Both films depict the dangers faced by adolescents. While Kids depicted the consequences of those dangers, this film portrays how one boy escapes from them, but ultimately needs to confront and reconcile his past.

The performances in the film are strong. The actors are all very credible. The dialogue is saturated with authenticity. Melonie Diaz, who previously appeared in Raising Victor Vargas, beautifully portrayed Dito's childhood girlfriend Laurie. Rosario Dawson plays the grown up Laurie, and incidentally made her film debut in Kids.

Producer Robert Downey Jr. who encouraged Montiel to make the film, was excellent in an understated role as the adult Dito. The transition of actors between 1986 and the present was depicted effectively. Special mention to Chazz Palminteri, who always has a strong but unforced screen presence.

A film made with a small budget, it pays off with a strong, emotionally powerful and worthwhile story. I was surprised how the emotional impact crept up towards the end, as Dito dealt with his past as best he could.

This film is highly recommended for those who enjoy human drama in shades of grey. There's no good guy/bad guy thing happening here. It's people dealing with the hand that destiny has given them, and trying to find their way. It is full of emotional honesty and plausibility that you can buy into. And don't leave until after the final credits.

Was the above review useful to you?
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Best Performance In This Film fallinep
This is a terrific 'coming-of-age- film from a nostalgic point of view RockviewLTJ
God DAMN. banditaxis06
the guy in the wheelchair after the credit roll janehowar
What was 'so moving' about this film? nazogrande
Disappointing movie nils_menck2
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