An arson at an Hispanic social club that killed 53 people is related to a powerful Cuban, an INS agent, and the sale of fake green cards.


(as Ed Sherin)


(created by), (teleplay by) | 2 more credits »

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
José Pérez ...
Roberto Diaz
Lisa Emery ...
Katrina Van Brocklen
Cesar Pescador
Victor Campos ...
Domingo Guerra
Patrick Monahan
Kristen Cameron, Head Nurse
James Collins
Gil Rogers ...
Raul Aranas ...
Oscar Vergilio


Based on a real life event that happened in 1990. Ceretta and Logan investigate the fire of a social club where illegal immigrants frequented. With over 50 people killed in the blaze, the pressure is on both Ceretta and Logan to find clues as to why it happened, who was behind it and where will it lead? Written by danny gonzalez

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Release Date:

26 November 1991 (USA)  »

Filming Locations:

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Based on the The Happy Land Social Club Fire caused by Cuban refugee Julio González. On March 25, 1990, Julio Gonzalez poured a gallon of gasoline at the only exit to an illegal social club, which resulted in the deaths of 87 people in the Bronx. The few who survived jumped through the flames, one of whom was the intended victim of the crime - Gonzalez' girlfriend, Lydia Feliciano. See more »


When Cerreta and Logan enter the crime scene, Cerreta holds a cloth over his mouth and nose. As they are talking to the arson investigator on the stairs, the camera angle switches and Cerreta is no longer holding the cloth. See more »


[viewing bodies of people killed in a fire]
Det. Mike Logan: I've never seen this many. You?
Sgt. Phil Cerreta: Not in civilian life.
See more »


References The Godfather (1972) See more »

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User Reviews

Heaven on Fire.
5 December 2010 | by (Deming, New Mexico, USA) – See all my reviews

A nightclub, El Cielo, burns down, killing fifty-three Latinos, most Salvadoreans, mostly working class, and mostly illegal. Cerreta and Logan find that it was deliberate arson and finally track down the fumbling executor of the plan, Luiz Guzman, he of the broadly pinched face. The arson was designed as revenge for someone's having peddled badly faked green cards. Guzman's confession draws in a friend of Ben Stone's in the local INS office. Ben's friend refers to their college experience "in New Hampshire." In more than one episode, there is some sly reference to Michael Moriarty's real alma mater, Dartmouth, in Hanover, New Hampshire. The trail leads to the Cuban Godfather and a subordinate of his. Everybody gets what they deserve, except the victims.

Well up to the standards set by the other episodes in the early years. One of the features that made this series distinctive is on display here. The writers appear to have done their homework. They know their way around the Latino milieu in New York City, or at least they appear to.

For instance, we learn the Spanish slang term for green car. We also see the superior attitude shown by some Cubanos towards recent arrivals from Central America, like the Salvadoreans. The older Cubans were disproportionately wealthy professionals fleeing Fidel Castro. They were, by and large, quiet, respectable, and gangless. When I was a kid you could walk without trepidation through Cuban neighborhoods, and buy a cup of espresso for a nickel. You would hesitate before trying that in some other Latino neighborhoods.

This episode lacks a trial but it isn't missed. The denouement is given in a printed epilogue.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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