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La Bamba (1987)

PG-13 | | Biography, Drama, Music | 24 July 1987 (USA)
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Biographical story of the rise from nowhere of early rock and roll singer Ritchie Valens who died at age 17 in a plane crash with Buddy Holly and the Big Bopper.

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3,069 ( 10)
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 3 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Ritchie Valens
... Bob Morales
... Connie Valenzuela (as Rosana De Soto)
... Rosie Morales
... Donna Ludwig
... Bob Keane
... Ted Quillin
Marshall Crenshaw ... Buddy Holly
Howard Huntsberry ... Jackie Wilson
... Eddie Cochran
Daniel Valdez ... Lelo
Felipe Cantu ... Curandero
Eddie Frias ... Chino
... Mexican Ed
... Rudy
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Storyline

This is the true story of Ritchie Valens, a young rock and roll singer who tragically died in a plane crash at age 17. The film follows Ritchie from his days in Pacoima, California where he and his family make a meager living working on farms to his rise as a star. The film also focuses on Ritchie's friendship and rivalry with his older brother Bob Morales and his relationship with Donna Ludwig, his girlfriend. Written by Mattias Pettersson <seaman@sbbs.se>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Talent made him a star, fate made him a legend. The true story of Ritchie Valens. See more »

Genres:

Biography | Drama | Music

Certificate:

PG-13 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

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Release Date:

24 July 1987 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Let's Go  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$6,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$5,651,990, 26 July 1987, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$54,215,416
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the repeating plane crash dream of the 1957, one of the planes is a Beechcraft Bonanza Model 35 V tail. This is the type plane that Richie actually crashed in on Feb. 3, 1959. The actual planes in the 1957 crash were a DC7B and a F89 jet. See more »

Goofs

During the party for Ritchie, his mother takes a picture with a Kodak Brownie camera. She holds the camera up to her eye which seems normal, however, that style of camera has a viewer which requires the photographer to look down through a prism and not through an eye piece. Normally the camera was held at belly level and while the user looked down through a prism which reflected what was in front of them - it would not be held up to their eye as is depicted. See more »

Quotes

Buddy Holly: The sky belongs to the stars.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Caption starting off the music credits: "We greatfully acknowledge the help and support of the Valenzuela family". See more »


Soundtracks

Don't You Just Know It
Performed by Huey Smith and The Clowns
Courtesy of Original Sound Entertainment
Words & Music by Huey P. Smith
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User Reviews

 
"La Bamba" is an excellent star vehicle for revealing late Ritchie Valens' musical genius
8 January 2009 | by See all my reviews

In the history of Hollywood cinema,musicals have always played an important role."La Bamba" is one of those rare,well made musicals which depict the cause of the rising popularity of Latino music.All credit for this film's success must go to its creators such as director Luis Valdez,famous musicians Carlos Santana and Los Lobos and amazing actors Esai Morales and Lou Diamond Philips who plays "once in a lifetime role" of a talented rock musician named Ritchie Valens who left for heavenly abode at a young age.This film provides for an interesting viewing experience as we get mesmerized by its diverse themes which range from family drama,gentle romance,sibling rivalry and soothing music.La Bamba has enough material in the form of social message too.We learn from this film that true brothers are always made for each other as they understand each other's joys and pains.It is said that talent never goes undetected.This is shown candidly as young Ritchie Valens succeeds only due to his natural ability to perform beautiful songs."La Bamba" is a film for all those admirers of good cinema who would like to see a musical film.


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