7.2/10
7,680
54 user 17 critic

American Me (1992)

A Mexican-American Mafia kingpin is released from prison, falls in love for the first time, and grows introspective about his gangster lifestyle.

Director:

Edward James Olmos

Writers:

Floyd Mutrux (story), Floyd Mutrux (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Sal Lopez ... Pedro Santana
Vira Montes Vira Montes ... Esperanza Santana
Roberto Martín Márquez Roberto Martín Márquez ... Acha (as Robert Martin Marquez)
Dyana Ortelli ... Yolanda
Joe Aubel Joe Aubel ... Tattoo Artist
Rob Garrett Rob Garrett ... Zoot Riot Bystander
Lance August ... Young Sailor
Cody Glenn ... Older Sailor
Don Pugsley ... Police Officer
Panchito Gómez Panchito Gómez ... Young Montoya Santana (as Panchito Gomez)
Albert Joe Medina Jr. Albert Joe Medina Jr. ... Street Mechanic
Alex Solís Alex Solís ... Street Mechanic (as Alex Solis)
Raymond Amezquita Raymond Amezquita ... Abuelito
Steve Wilcox ... Young JD
Richard Coca ... Young Mundo
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Storyline

This epic depiction of thirty years of Chicano gang life in Los Angeles focuses on a teen named Santana who, with his friends Mundo and the Caucasian-but-acting-Hispanic J.D., form their own gang and are soon arrested for a break-in. Santana gets into trouble again and goes straight from reform school to prison, spending eighteen years there, and becoming leader of a powerful gang, both inside and outside the prison, while there. When he is finally released, he tries to make sense of the violence in his life, in a world much changed from when last he was in it. Written by Gary Dickerson <slug@mail.utexas.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

In prison they are the law. On the streets they are the power.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong violence and sensuality, and for language and drug content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Edward James Olmos was issued a permit to carry a concealed weapon by the Los Angeles Police Dept. because of the many death threats he received from Mexican Mafia members. Before filming began, they were under the impression that the movie was to be a favorable portrait of their organization, and were angered when the film emphasized their criminal activities. See more »

Goofs

El Japo (Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa) is clearly an Asian (Japanese) portraying an Hispanic gang member. See more »

Quotes

J.D.: It's too late for that now, homes. They're too big in Vacaville to make a move on. Now they're making a play and shit in Folsom. They gotta pay a bill, ese.
Montoya Santana: Who's carrying all the way for them?
J.D.: Dude named El Chucko Pena.
Pie Face: I know that vato. I know him real well.
Montoya Santana: Good, you get this take him.
Pie Face: I say, carnal, me and him shared the same coka many times, ese.
Montoya Santana: That's gonna make easier to get next to him, ese.
Pie Face: He used to be my crime partner. I mean that vato is a real man.
J.D.: Hey what the fuck is wrong with you, ...
[...]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Cleveland Show: Hot Cocoa Bang Bang (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

El Gaban
Arrangement by Alfredo Lopez, Abel Rocha, Fernando Nataren
Performed by Quetzlcoatl
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User Reviews

the greatest description of gang and prison life
12 February 2004 | by Kwyzybo-2See all my reviews

this had the right amount of story, realism, and a great ending. people say it's too violent, but it's a prison movie it has to be violent, because prison is not sweet. Edward James Olmos is not only brave for doing this movie with actual prisoners and gang members, but he was great at depicting what happens to people when they get involved in a gang and do not do what the gang leader says, because when they tell you to kill someone, that person is going to get killed. either he goes down by your hands, or you end up getting killed with him. one of my favorite movies, i give it a 10/10


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

13 March 1992 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

American Me See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$16,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$3,378,100, 15 March 1992

Gross USA:

$13,086,430

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$13,086,430
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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